Community Mourns Faribault Woman Struck And Killed by Rice Co. Sheriff’s Sergeant – WCCO
RICE COUNTY, Minn. (WCCO) — Family and friends are mourning the loss of a Faribault woman struck and killed early Saturday by an on-duty Rice County Sheriff’s sergeant.
Bouquets of yellow flowers sit on the side of the road in Morristown in honor of Stephanie Olson Wesley, a woman who friends and family said had a smile that would light up the room.
“It was just surreal. All of a sudden she’s gone,” Wesley’s relative Arthur Roberts III said. “God only knows what happened.”
The sheriff’s office said Sgt. Trevor Peterson, 46, was heading east on Morristown Boulevard near Holland Avenue when he struck and killed the 52-year-old around 2 a.m. At the time, they said he was not responding to an emergency call. The Minnesota State Patrol believes Wesley was in the road when she was struck.
“Lots of people will miss her dearly,” Roberts III said. “She was well liked and well regarded by the community.”
Tesse Lynn Lester, Wesley’s friend of 18 years, said her kids and grandkids were her everything, and her laugh was contagious.
As the small town of Faribault mourns the loss of Wesley, her loved ones hope she’s remembered for her strong spirit.
“For her willingness to help people, for her determination and being kind,” Roberts III said.
The Minnesota State Patrol is now leading the investigation.
In late December in St. Michael, a Wright County Sheriff’s deputy hit and killed 84-year-old Harold Welter in his driveway while responding to a medical call.