The family of Laura Jeglum-Woycheshen hug members of the Ridge Meadows RCMP after a press conference Tuesday morning announcing the arrest in the fatal hit and run that killed the 48-year-old mother and grandmother. (Colleen Flanagan/ THE NEWS)

Chilliwack man charged in fatal hit-and-run in Maple Ridge

Motorcyclist Laura Jeglum-Woycheshen, 48, died after she was hit by a vehicle on Sept. 14, 2017

A Chilliwack man faces eight criminal charges related to a hit-and-run fatality involving a motorcycle last September in Maple Ridge.

Ryan Gerald Lowe, 33, faces one count of dangerous driving causing death, one of impaired driving causing death, two counts each of dangerous driving causing bodily harm and impaired driving causing bodily harm, and one count of failing to stop at accident.

All the charges are alleged to have taken place in Maple Ridge.

He also faces one count of public mischief in Chilliwack on the same day. The criminal code charge of public mischief relates to misleading peace officers in an investigation.

Lowe, a Chilliwack secondary school grad, was arrested and charges were sworn on Feb. 2.

On Sept. 14, 2017, a motorcyclist was killed in a head-on collision on Lougheed Highway at 280th Street in east Maple Ridge. The motorcycle rider was identified as Laura Jeglum-Woycheshen, a 48-year-old mother and grandmother.

She was riding her Harley-Davidson with friends westbound at the time of the collision, just before 9 p.m. on her way back from dinner.

Two other people were seriously injured in the incident but survived, according Ridge Meadows RCMP.

The vehicle involved left the scene and was later located, but the driver was not immediately located. Later in the month, police issued a plea for help for anyone who may have seen a grey 2003 Pontiac Sunfire.

They were also seeking any dash cam video that may have captured the vehicle at the time.

A five-month investigation led officers across multiple jurisdictions, including Maple Ridge, Mission and Chilliwack.

Another man, a 31-year-old Abbotsford resident, Robert Kendall Lowe, has been charged with obstructing a police officer in Chilliwack in connection with the investigation. He was released on a promise to appear and is due in court for a first appearance Feb. 28.

“This type of investigation not only impacts the families involved, but our community as a whole was deeply touched by this traffic accident,” RCMP Sgt. Brenda Gresiuk said Feb. 6 at the Randy Herman Centre For Community Safety in Maple Ridge.

The victim’s family was present at the announcement of the charges.

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“My mom was a very loving person,” said her son, Rob Jeglum, someone who loved riding her motorcycle and was known for bringing family together.

He added that it is a relief knowing someone has been charged in his mother’s death, as the past five months have been painful for the family.

“We’re just hoping we can move forward,” Jeglum said.

“We really need to be OK. And my mom would want us to be OK. She would want us to be OK.”

Her sister Brandy Gibson thanked all who came forward as witnesses and those who stayed at the scene that night.

“We thank you from the bottom of our hearts, because without all of you, we wouldn’t be where we are today.”

Ryan Lowe is next due in Port Coquitlam Provincial Court Feb. 21.

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