Parents offer $10K reward for info on daughter’s hit-and-run

By Greg Doering

The parents of a K-State student critically injured in a hit-and-run accident are offering a $10,000 reward for information on the driver.

Amber Wilhelm, 21, of Manhattan is in the critical care unit at Stormont-Vail Hospital in Topeka after a pickup truck struck her early Friday morning as she walked near Aggieville. Wilhelm is a senior studying hospitality management at K-State.

On Tuesday her parents, Darryl and Donna Wilhelm, launched a GoFundMe campaign to raise the reward money. As of Wednesday morning, the project had raised $10,075 from 129 donors.

The family said any additional money will be used to help pay for Amber’s medical bills. The post also said the reward offer is good until July 18.

Riley County Police Department spokesman Alexander Robinson said Wednesday he’s not aware of any tips on the case coming in since the reward was announced.

“As far as I know, we don’t have any leads,” he said.

In addition to the reward, both of Amber’s parents made video statements Tuesday on the RCPD’s social media pages.

Donna said she received a phone call about the accident at 2:30 a.m. Friday, which she described as a parent’s worst nightmare.

“Having to drive to a hospital, the first image that you see is your child is lying in a hospital bed hooked up to a ventilator keeping her alive,” Donna said in the video Tuesday afternoon. “If you are the person, please come forward. We just want to put the pieces together.”

Darryl made a similar video Tuesday morning asking anyone with information about his daughter’s accident to contact Riley County police.

“Just looking to see if anybody has any information leading to the arrest and to help find the person so we can pick up the pieces and go on,” Darryl said.

Both videos were shot in the hospital where Amber initially was reported as in critical condition.

RCPD officials said the background noise in the video comes from “the sound of the machines helping keep Amber alive.”

“She’s fighting for her life in critical care at Stormont-Vail, and her parents just want answers,” the department’s Facebook caption said. “If you know something, please call.” RCPD officers responded to a hit-andrun report at 1:55 a.m. Friday at 12th Street and Bluemont Avenue.

Witnesses on scene described a “light in color” 2011 to 2016 Chevrolet or GMC extended- cab pickup truck as the vehicle that struck Amber. The driver then left the scene headed west on Anderson Avenue.

Officers said there’s a chance that the driver’s vehicle will only have slight damage to its front end. RCPD officials are asking members of the public to call dispatch at 785-537-2112 if they see a vehicle matching the description.

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