| Crime |

Nicholas Linsk, Accused of Driving Into Bicyclist and Leaving, Blames Truck Thief (Who Was Nice Enough to Return His Truck)

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Mesa resident Nicholas Linsk is accused of driving his truck away from the scene of his fatal collision with a bicyclist in Fountain Hills, which was reported by a man driving in the lane next to him at the time.

According to court documents obtained by New Times, the initial story Linsk provided to the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office was that he noticed his truck was damaged when he left work, and it was parked in a different spot from the one he parked it in before heading into work at Target.

Naturally, that would mean that someone stole the truck from outside of Target on Shea Boulevard, ran over the bicyclist a few blocks away, near Palisades Boulevard, then returned the truck to the parking lot and went on with their day.

After being informed that the man driving next to him at the time is the one who reported the incident, Linsk changed his story.

The witness told police that he saw Linsk's truck hit something, and although he only saw the debris from the collision, he reported that there was significant damage to Linsk's truck, and it looked like he hit "something more significant than a traffic barricade," the documents state.

After someone driving Linsk's truck stopped at the Mayo Clinic -- which is on the Scottsdale side of the border with Fountain Hills -- the witness phoned in the license plate number and a description of the driver, complete with the red shirt.

An MCSO deputy went to Linsk's home in Mesa, and Linsk told the deputy his story about the truck just ending up that way once he left work.

After being informed about the witness, Linsk told the deputy he thought he just hit a traffic barricade, although he didn't see any other traffic barricades in the area, the documents state.

He said he stopped to check out the damage, then proceeded to go home. Meanwhile, a deputy who went to the scene of the collision found the body of Marwan Maalouf, who had been riding his bicycle in the bike lane on Shea Boulevard.

According to the court documents, there was a skid mark from a bicycle tire about a foot inside the bike lane, which investigators believe is the point of impact.

Debris at the scene happened to match parts that were missing off of Linsk's Chevrolet truck, according to the documents.

Linsk faces a felony charge of leaving the scene of a fatal, at-fault traffic collision.

His bond has been set at $90,000.

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