Woman gets 1-year jail sentence in Fort Collins hit-and-run that led to bicyclist's death

FORT COLLINS - A 28-year-old woman was sentenced Wednesday in the January hit-and-run death of a bicyclist in Fort Collins.

Theresa Marie O'Connor, of Fort Collins, was given one year in jail and four years probation, to be served concurrently. O'Connor was also ordered to pay $24,000 to the victim's family and $6,000 to a charity the name of the victim. O'Connor was also sentenced to 200 hours of community service.

O'Connor was originally charged with leaving the scene of an accident involving death, careless driving and failure to report accident.

On May 12, O'Connor pleaded guilty to leaving the scene of an accident.

Ernesto Wiedenbrug, 46, was struck and killed on Jan. 24, while he was riding his bicycle on driving on the I-25 frontage road near Windsor.  There were no witnesses to the accident and evidence left at the scene indicated only that the vehicle suspected to be involved was silver. 

Four days after the fatal crash, O'Conner surrendered to the Colorado State Patrol.

O’Connor told Trooper Ben Simpson she was headed home from work and traveling northbound on the frontage road when she struck a bicyclist.

"After I struck the bicyclist, I left the scene,' her affidavit stated.

About 50 cyclists were in the courtroom during her sentencing in a show of solidarity toward the cycling community.

Reading a prepared statement, O'Connor said she made a "terrible mistake." As part of the deal, she has agreed to be in a public service announcement video, which attorneys said will be released later this week.

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