Police arrest another man in connection to fatal hit-and-run

Police arrest another man in connection to fatal hit-and-run
Christopher Michael Rhea

PORTLAND, Ore. - Portland Police said they have arrested a fourth person related to the fatal hit-and-run crash that killed 63-year-old Nancy Schoeffler.

Schoeffler was killed when she was hit by a car on West Burnside Street at about 11:20 p.m. March 31.

In a press release, police said they arrested 28-year-old Christopher Michael Rhea at his home in Lake Oswego on Wednesday as part of their ongoing investigation into Schoeffler's death.

Police said Rhea is suspect Ashley Chavez's boyfriend and was with her when she was arrested in Bellingham, Wash. on June 1. He was released at the time and police said he was not in the car when Schoeffler was hit.

Rhea is now being charged with hindering prosecution and tampering with physical evidence. Police said the arrest and charges are "a result of Rhea's actions after the fatal hit and run" but they were not more specific.

Chavez, 23, is suspected of being the driver that hit Schoeffler, according to police. Police tracked Chavez down to a motel in Bellingham, Wash. They said they feared she was preparing to flee into Canada.

Chavez's brother, Josh Chavez, 24, was also arrested on the same charges as Rhea.

The first arrest in the widely publicized case came in late May when Dawn Kaps-Collins, 43, was arrested. She was in the car that hit Schoeffler, police said.

Ashley Chavez and Kaps-Collins are suspected of trying to hide the car that hit Schoeffler. Neighbors told police they saw work being done on the car and that parts were being swapped out.

A law enforcement source told KATU News that the suspects had been drinking at a Timbers soccer game and decided to try and cover up the crash after hitting Schoeffler (photo at right)). They also decided to hide the vehicle involved but the source did not specify where or how.

Schoeffler was a mother and caregiver for elderly people, most recently two 95-year-old twins, according to her family.