Woman pinned under vehicle, killed in "tragic accident"

A woman died after being hit and pinned under a car driven by her husband in Chico Thursday.

It happened at about 11:30 a.m. in the parking lot of an apartment complex at 2055 Amanda Way.

KRCR News Channel 7's Taylor Torregano was already there to cover another story and was the second person on scene.

She said it sounded like a loud thump as if someone had crashed their car, and when she turned the corner she saw a woman pinned underneath a van.

The 72-year-old man who had been driving was sitting down on the curb and said he didn't know what had happened.

He said he had just arrived at his apartment and called his wife to have her come open the gate because it wasn't working.

"When the gate opened, she crossed in front of the vehicle, to get into the passenger side and the vehicle lunged forward," said Nick Bishop. He was driving in the car behind the husband, also waiting to get into the apartment.

He said it looked like an accident and the husband said he thought the gas was the brake. The Chico Police Department said that their preliminary investigation ruled it as a "tragic accident".

Bishop said he jumped out of his car, hoping the wife, who was 68-years-old, had been able to back up.

"[But] as I come around the side of the car, I saw her underneath the vehicle and I knew, it was gonna be bad," he said.

After calling 911, the dispatcher said to check the woman's pulse. "I checked a number of places and couldn't find it and it was just horribly sad," said Bishop. "And I was telling them please get someone out here to help me get this vehicle off of her."

Within minutes, Chico Police arrived and they all gathered together to lift the van and free her.

"In this case, it was extremely important that we had several officers close by and were able to get here and use that number of officers to just manually lift that vehicle off of her," said Commander Billy Aldridge.

"There was like ten of us and then we all lifted the vehicle and one of the officers pulled her out and I stepped back and they immediately started CPR," Bishop explained.

Then she was transported to the hospital where she died from her injuries.

"I just can't imagine, you know I hurt for her real bad but I can't imagine him, seeing his wife and knowing that he caused that," Bishop said with tears in his eyes.

Chico police said preliminary findings show that this was a "tragic accident". Investigators will continue the investigation over the next few days to confirm their preliminary findings.

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