Family mourns death of mother killed in San Jose hit-and-run, offers reward

Police are searching for a hit and run driver who killed 29-year-old Nicole Stanton. The Southern California woman was in San Jose for last Sunday’s 49ers game. The crash happened on North 1st Street and East Rosemary Streets near the Interstate 880 off-ramp early Monday morning. The family is now offering a $10,000 reward to find the driver who took off.

Stanton, a Seahawks fan, was with her father and brother who are huge 49er fans at Levi's Stadium last Sunday. It was the first NFL game for the family from San Dimas in Los Angeles County. Nicole’s father Alvin Trivette said they had the best time.

“I kissed her on her cheek and me and my son and her said we were going to do every year,” said Trivette. “We had no idea it would be the last year.”

The family was staying at the Wyndham Garden Inn near 1st Street. After the game, they had drinks at nearby Doghouse Sports Lounge leaving around midnight.

“I dragged everyone out of there and said hey it's raining but we are going to walk anyway,” said Trivette. “Halfway home she didn't want to walk in the rain and decided she would meet us there.”

It was the last time he would see her.

Police called him and said Stanton had been struck by a car near the 880 off-ramp sometime before 1 a.m. 

“We believe she was possibly sitting on the curb there in that area when she was struck,” said San Jose Police Officer Gina Tepoorten. 

Police said the suspect's car was likely heading southbound on First Street, when the driver may have attempted to make a U-turn and hit her.

Nicole is one of 23 pedestrian deaths in San Jose this year, which is seven more than last year. Police said, the holidays are a dangerous time for accidents with more cars and pedestrians on the road.

“We are just asking vehicles to slow down,” said Tepoorten. “We know people are busy and want to get to where they are going but t's not worth it.”

Stanton worked as a caregiver for Visiting Angels, taking care of the elderly. The aspiring nurse leaves behind a six-year-old daughter and seven-year-old son. 

“She was going for her R.N. and she just got her A.A. and was going to transfer into nursing school so their daddy told them God needed an R.N. in heaven.”

Stanton’s husband is a war veteran who was shot in Afghanistan and is now disabled. A Go Fund Me page has been set up to help the children.

Trivette said police found white and silver paint on Stanton’s body. Police said the suspect was possibly driving a white car with chrome trim. The car should have damage on the driver's side bumper. 

Anyone with information is asked to contact San Jose Police Detective Troy Simmons at (408) 277-4654.