CHICO >> Police have concluded the death of a 20-year-old Chico State University student in Monday's train accident was a suicide, authorities said today.
A joint investigation between Chico Police Department, Butte County Sheriff's Office and Union Pacific Railroad have ruled Samantha M. Lewis' death was intentional when she was struck by a southbound train at 5:19 a.m. Monday while walking south between the rails of the railroad tracks, said Chico police Lt. Dave Britt. The incident occurred near the bike path that runs from the 500 block of Nord Avenue toward the tennis courts on the Chico State campus.
The train was moving at 49 mph when the conductor saw Lewis on the tracks, activated his horns and put the train into the emergency braking process. He told investigators she made no attempt to avoid the train, police said.
Lewis, who is originally from Clayton, was majoring in nutrition and food sciences, according to her Facebook profile.
Chico State's Counseling and Wellness Center is available at 898-6345 or in Student Services Center Room 430. The Butte County Crisis 24-hour hotline is 1-800-334-6622 or 891-2810, and the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline can be reached at 1-800-273-8255.
Contact reporter Ashley Gebb at 896-7768.