Binghamton University junior Stefani Lineva died early Saturday around 2 a.m. The Binghamton Police Department (BPD) is investigating the incident.
According to BPD, Lineva was found lying against the concrete median in the middle of the highway, having sustained severe injuries that were consistent with being struck by a motor vehicle. The victim was taken to United Health Services Wilson Medical Center in Johnson City where she was pronounced dead.
According to WBNG, Bulgarian news outlets have stated that Lineva’s family believes she was killed in a different location, and her body was then moved to the roadway where she was found. BPD has not yet made a statement about this. The coroner’s report states that Lineva’s injuries were consistent with being hit by a car, but cannot confirm whether the injuries were sustained in the location her body was found.
A $30,250 reward is being offered for any information that leads to the arrest of a driver responsible for the incident. Binghamton University and the city are working together to offer the reward, with an added donations contributed by anonymous Downtown businesses, the Newman Development Group, Thai Time Restaurant, Binghamton Hots, Woidt Engineering, anonymous Vestal businesses, 20 Hawley, The Union Hotel, Terry and Barbara Kane, Parents of a local BU student, Law Office of Battisti and Garzo P.C., Mark Yonaty, Dan and Jean Lindsey and Marty Kane.
Lineva transferred from Adelphi University, and this was her first semester at BU. She was a member of the Binghamton women’s tennis team.
A memorial service was held Sunday evening at 5 p.m. at the Newman House. University President Harvey Stenger shared the news with the campus community in a statement released on Sunday.
“The loss of someone so young and talented is almost impossible to imagine and impacts our entire community,” Stenger wrote. “We will miss Stefani’s spirit, passion and engagement with everyone she touched on our campus.”
Patrick Elliot, the director of athletics at BU, wrote in a statement that Lineva had already made an impact on the University even in her first semester.
“Stefani was a bright and talented young woman who even in her brief time at Binghamton, embodied the exceptional spirit of being a student-athlete at our University,” he wrote. “Our sincere condolences go out to her family, friends, teammates and fellow student-athletes.”
Head coach Libby McGovern said that Lineva was a strong player who made an impression University-wide.
“She loved being at practice with her friends and was always the first one to volunteer when we performed community service,” she wrote. “She had very high aspirations of making a difference in the world and doing great things for other people. We are heartbroken.”
At this point, Ryan Yarosh, the BU director of media and public relations, asked that media not attempt to contact members of Lineva’s team or family at this time. Stenger gave his condolences on behalf of the University.
“I offer my deepest condolences to Stefani’s family, teammates, classmates and all who knew and loved her,” he wrote. “Please keep her and her family in your thoughts as we all mourn her loss.”
Those with any information regarding the incident are encouraged to contact BPD at (607) 772-7080. This story is developing, check bupipedream.com for updates.