Driver pleads guilty to hit-run killing marine biologist

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SAN DIEGO – The man who caused the hit-and-run crash that killed a marine biologist pleaded guilty Wednesday.

Christopher Stockmeyer III, 41, was charged in the death of 27-year-old Rachel Morrison and will be sentenced on June 20.

Christopher-Stockmeyer-IIIStockmeyer was charged with four felony counts including vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, DUI causing injury, driving with measurable alcohol level and hit-and-run.

Morrison, of Encinitas, was crossing the intersection of Camino Del Mar and Coast Boulevard around 10 p.m. on March 28 when an Audi A-4 ran a stop sign, hit her and drove away, investigators said. Her body was found 120 feet away in the bushes.

Investigators traced a broken license plate from the Audi to Stockmeyer’s residence, where he was taken into custody.

During Stockmeyer’s arraignment a week ago, the prosecutor said authorities tested his blood alcohol about five hours after the crash and it was .14. According to the prosecutor, if the test was administered at the time of the crash it would have been estimated at .24.

Morrison was a PhD student at the Scripps Oceanographic Institution and was in the process of training for the Boston Marathon.


  • dailydebacle

    Did the right thing. Unfortunately, he had lots of opportunity to do the right thing earlier (starting with Not drinking and driving).

  • highwayman

    ditto — raises him up some over those that plead not guilty [ when they ARE ] and cost the system AND the taxpayers SO much time and money!! In ADDITION to causin the victims and their survivin family members MORE grief — kudos to him for that, at least — it's causin *his* family grief as well, and he's gonna miss seein his children grow up :(

    • Anonymous

      I agree. I think it shows the guy has integrity. He probably has a good heart. Good people make bad mistakes, just like bad people make bad mistakes. I suspect the back story here is that a good guy made a series of terrible choices that night. Now he, and his family, in particular his 2 young boys, are now going to pay a huge, life changing price for those choices. The boys are looking at facing most of their childhood without the presence of their father, which is so heartbreaking. I hope the boys can one day admire the way their father has so quickly started to make amends for his awful, cruel choices that night.

      I am just sure he regrets all his choices, especially fleeing.

  • wes

    Throw his butt in jail for life. You take a life therefore you givith yours. DUIs should be treated as murder.

  • fred

    Time to make it a requirement that all automobile manufacturers put a breathalizer in all new vehicles. Car won't start if ANY alcohol is detected. This young lady lost her life because a selfish man chose to drive after drinking. Sorry kids, your daddy is going away because he chose poorly! Any other mommy or daddies out there? Stop drinking and driving. I see it everyday I go to restaurants for dinner. Daddies drinking a beer and mommy is drinking some fufu drink while their kids are seated at the table with them….i always ask my wife "I wonder which one is driving them home?"

  • Anonymous

    Another loser… Really don’t care about if he was a good man or dad he still killed a innocent person! Hope he dies in Jail without ever seeing his children again! Karma……

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