SEABROOK, N.H. (WHDH) - A Seabrook, New Hampshire, woman accused of striking and killing a man with her truck while drunk, as he walked his dog with his wife, had repeatedly threatened and harassed the couple, neighbors said.
Police officers responding to a reported motor vehicle accident involving pedestrians on Pine Street determined that Catrina Costello, 38, had intentionally struck Erin and Stephen VanDalinda with her car, leaving Stephen VanDalinda dead and Erin VanDalinda hospitalized with numerous serious injuries, according to a joint statement issued by New Hampshire Attorney General Gordon J. MacDonald, New Hampshire State Police Col. Christopher Wagner, and Seabrook Police Chief Brett J. Walker.
“I didn’t think it would escalate to this,” neighborhood resident Brian Henderson. “She was always really mad at them all the time.”
Henderson said the VanDalindas had an active restraining order against Costello due to an ongoing dispute about their dogs.
“They’re the nicest people in the world,” he said of the couple. “They would just be walking down the street and females would drive by, swear at them, yell things out the window, give them the middle finger, and be real aggressive like that. They couldn’t even come out of their house sometimes.”
Neighbor Dan Kaussner said the couple lived in the area for 20 years but were planning to move due to the harassment.
“We were planning a going away party for them,” he said. “They were moving because they wanted to get away from the bad blood with the neighbor.”
Costello was later arrested on two counts of felony second-degree assault, two felony counts of aggravated driving while intoxicated with serious bodily injury, two felony counts of conduct after an accident with serious bodily injury, and three counts of violating a stalking order.
State Rep. and Seabrook Selectman Aboul Khan, who lives in the neighborhood, told 7News that Costello’s truck came around the corner, swerved and struck the couple as they were walking their dog, which was also injured in the crash.
“Devastated, everybody devastated,” he said. “We’re trying to find the peace on how we can cope with this. It’s unbelievable what we are going through.”
Exeter Hospital, where Stephen VanDalinda worked, released a statement Thursday afternoon.
“Exeter Hospital’s administration, clinical providers and staff are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Stephen Van Dalinda, a long time nurse in Exeter Hospital’s Outpatient Surgery Center,” the statement read. “Stephen was a lovely man and a great nurse who made magic every day. He will be deeply missed by all who knew him. We extend our deepest sympathy to the Van Dalinda family.”
Costello declined her arraignment Thursday in Rockingham County Superior Court.
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call New Hampshire State Police Sgt. Marc Beaudoin at 603-223-8678.