The woman accused of hitting a university student with her car and leaving him for dead in Michigan’s Oakland Township on New Year’s Day fled to Thailand days after the incident, according to a criminal complaint.
The suspect, identified as Tubtim “Sue” Howson, purchased a one-way ticket from Detroit Metro Airport two days after the deadly collision, travel records reportedly show. After a few connecting flights, she landed in Bangkok on Jan. 5.
Benjamin Kable, 22, was heading home from a New Year’s Eve party when a 2016 white BMW 320i struck him along Rochester Road at around 5:49 a.m. on Jan. 1. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Howson, 57, is a U.S. citizen originally from Thailand. A friend she reportedly confided to about the incident had urged her to go to the police, but she allegedly said, “No cops, no cops.”
Howson is now facing several felonies, including interstate flight to avoid prosecution and failure to stop at a scene resulting in death.
The Oakland County Sheriff’s Office sought help from the FBI, which then filed the criminal complaint Monday.
So far, it’s unclear whether the federal government seeks to extradite Howson. The U.S. and Thailand have an extradition treaty.
Kable’s father Michael said he hopes Howson will “do the right thing” and return to the U.S.
“Accidents happen, but you know people have to take responsibility for their actions,” Michael Kable told CBS Detroit. “I wish she would do the right thing and bring herself back because it’s made it way worse for our family.”
Benjamin Kable, the second youngest of six siblings, was an electrical engineering senior at Michigan State University. His father believes the matter is now primarily in the hands of federal authorities.
“It is hard to fathom how somebody can just leave someone dying on the road, just no empathy,” Michael Kable told The Detroit News. “I don’t understand it.”