Hayley Riggins' memorial missing, mother pleads for its return
REDDING, Calif. - The memorial for Hayley Riggins, the young mother who was killed at the intersection of Placer Street and Buenaventura Boulevard in a motorcycle accident, is missing.
It was back in April when the 27-year-old was riding her motorcycle at the intersection. According to Redding Police 53-year-old Virginia Anderson ran a red light causing the crash that killed Riggins.
Anderson was allegedly under the influences of a number of drugs including methamphetamine, amphetamine, Hydrocodone and Morphine.
Since the crash an arrangement of bright flowers, signs, lights and trinkets has taken on a home at the corner of the intersection, but on Sunday it went missing.
"The last place I feel close to her is there and it's a place for me to go right now to look at and think of my daughter and how many people love her," Sandy Hayley, Riggins' mother explained as she choked back tears.
"That is where my daughter died. That is where she passed away."
Sandy, who has been overwhelmed and grateful for the amount of community support said the memorial was a place for people to go to honor her daughter.
"And that was her sight it was pink because pink was her," said Sandy with a smile.
Last week the city contacted Sandy to discuss a plan for removing the memorial.
"We give families a month or two to kind of grieve and go through that process," explained assistant Director of Public Works Chuck Auckland.
When she heard from the city, Sandy was confused and upset.
There are several memorials scattered throughout the City of Redding, including three on Victor Avenue alone.
But Auckland said memorials are a gray area in the city.
"We don't have a formal policy."
Auckland said the problems come when the memorials bring hazards, distractions to the public or candles creating a fire hazard.
Sandy, however, said she replaced all candles with fake tea lights to comply.
So when she got the news Sunday morning the memorial had been taken down she assumed it was the city.
But Auckland said that's not the case.
"I don't know who took it down. The city did not take it down. Our street maintenance crews did not take it down and I spoke with our Police Chief who told me none of his personnel did as well."
The memorial is now gone but on Monday those who love and support Riggins are making sure she's remembered.
The ground and several signs at the intersection are now painted and signs have been put up in her memory.
Sandy said she was unaware of the spray painting and does not know who did it.
Auckland said public funds and resources will now be used to clean it up.
For now, Auckland said if Riggins' family puts the memorial back up his department is willing to work with them.
"Absolutely, I mean we understand the grieving process. We just have to make sure it's safe for the public as well," said Auckland.
For Sandy, she just wants her daughter's belongings back.
"Whoever is behind taking her stuff could just take it back and replace it from where they got it. Please put it back."
Virginia Anderson was in court this morning to check in after posting bail but she has yet to be charged in Riggins' death as the Shasta County District Attorney's Office continues to work on the case.
Anderson will be back in court July 7.