Friday, October 17, 2008

Drunk Driver, Troy Hovey, Kills 32 year old husband and father-to-be, Amit Tandon...Killer gets Probation!

This is my first blog so I apologize if I fail to follow some sort of particular etiquette.

The topic I am writing on is something I feel Very Strongly About. A man, Troy Hovey, took a life, that of Amit Tandon, husband and father to be (pictured), and for Hovey's crimes, he will receive probation...Please, if you are reading this, don't stay silent, don't just shake your head and say what a shame...Do Something! Say Something! Write letters, send emails, contact the governor, senators, assemblyman, Take Action! Make a Difference!


On August 6th, 2008, Troy Hovey, a 36 year old from Chico, California, drank to excess, resulting in a blood alcohol content three times the legal limit. Mr. Hovey got behind the wheel of his vehicle and drove at speeds in excess of almost twice the legal speed limit, crashing through a sign and continuing to drive north in the south bound lane of highway 99 at the north end of Chico. Amit Tandon was returning home after a day of work, selling his delicious Indian food to hungry patrons in the north state. Troy Hovey hit Amit Tandon head-on, Mr. Tandon was pronounced dead at the scene, Mr. Hovey walked away with minor injuries.

On October 15, Troy Hovey was scheduled for sentencing after first pleading not guilty, then changing his plea to no contest. Troy Hovey, for his crimes, in what is being seen by many as a travesty of justice, was sentenced to three years probation and 180 days in jail (of which approximately 60 days have been served) with an opportunity for early release into an alcohol treatment program. Citizens of Chico and throughout northern California are outraged, disgusted, shocked, and saddened by the inequity of Troy Hovey's punishment to the crime he committed.

There are no words to express the suffering that Troy Hovey has brought to the lives of so many through the death of Amit Tandon, some have even called Mr. Hovey a murderer. Troy Hovey may not have been legally labeled a murderer, but his actions are considered by many to be just that, murder.

Troy Hovey stole the life of a man considered to be extremely talented, magnetic, charismatic, full of life, and a wonderful husband to his wife of seven months, Deepika. Amit Tandon was only 32 years old. He was a son, a brother, an uncle, a cousin, a friend, a husband, and in December, he would have been a father to his son. Amit was a successful community member and business man who made Chico a better place. Everyone who met him was better for having him in their lives. He was Deepika's love, her life, her partner, her friend, he was her perfection. Deepika must now face the rest of her life without him by her side. She must try and keep the business running without his help, his knowledge, his life. She must raise her child without him. Amit's son will never get to know the joy of having a father, never get to be held, comforted, taught, teased, and loved by his father. Amit's parents will never get to see their son become a father, to see him grow old, to see the success that Amit was achieving. Amit's niece and nephew will never get to see their beloved uncle ever again, to know him, to have his love in their lives. Amit's brother will never get to tease him, learn from him, to be with him. The community of Chico has lost an upstanding member of the community who touched so many lives. Amit was loved from Chico, to Redding, to Red Bluff, to Sacramento, to San Jose, To Truckee, to Stockton, to Paradise, to Oroville, to Malaysia, to Dubai, to India…Around the world, we have felt this loss.

Can one even imagine, even begin to imagine what the pain of such a loss can bring? On Monday, August 4th, Amit found out that he was going to be father to a baby boy। On Wednesday, August 6th, Amit worked in the kitchen to prepare for the markets he would be having that day and for the rest of the week, never knowing the tragedy that would unfold. Imagine for a moment that you were in Deepika's place that night…There are no words to express the devastation, horror, trauma that one feels in that moment as the heart is torn from your chest and ripped apart, that your body screams out from the devastation, to pray to god that this is not happening, to beg that it is not true, to hope that it is all a nightmare and that they are wrong, it was someone else, that Amit would come walking through the door at any moment…but he didn't, he won't, he never will।

Troy Hovey is, for all intents and purposes, a murderer. When Troy Hovey chose to consume excess alcohol, chose not to call his wife for a sober ride home, chose not to ask or call a friend for a ride home, chose not to ask a bar patron to give him a ride home, chose not to call a taxi, chose to get behind the wheel of his vehicle, chose to drive drunk at three times the legal Blood Alcohol Content level, chose to drive at speeds that were almost twice the legal posted speed limit (through a school zone), chose to speak on a telephone while under the influence and speeding, Troy Hovey, chose to commit murder.

Troy Hovey is selfish, reckless, and without care. Deepika Tandon must suffer for the rest of her life to not have her husband, the love of her life, by her side. Amit Tandon's child will never get to know his father. All of those who knew Amit Tandon must suffer this loss. Troy Hovey should have been punished to the fullest extent of the law because he chose to take a life. Troy Hovey should be punished for the rest of his life…as everyone affected by the actions of Troy Hovey must suffer for the rest of theirs. Yes, Mr. Hovey may indeed have an alcohol problem, one for which he has been unsuccessful in treating, however, a long prison term and treatment while in prison would have been more fitting. Yes, Mr. Hovey has a family, but what of the family of Amit Tandon, his wife, his unborn child, his parents, brother, niece, nephew, what of them?

The hearts of those from communities near and far to Chico go out to Amit Tandon's family and all that cared for Amit. This is a double tragedy - the loss of Amit Tandon and the failure of our court system to punish those guilty of such a heinous crime. There are no excuses for the actions of Troy Hovey. There are hundreds of people, likely more, in this world, that suffer from alcoholism and drink to excess, and that though their actions may exhibit poor judgment and demonstrate an addiction that warrants treatment, never engage in actions that would result in the death of another human being. This may be the first recorded offense for Mr. Hovey, however, that does not mean that Mr. Hovey has not put lives at risk before or that he may not do so again...

On August 6th, 2008, it was Amit Tandon that fell victim to the careless, selfish choice of another person, it could have been you or one of your loved ones, on a different night it still may be…

Some of the above comments and thoughts were respectfully borrowed from the statement that Deepika Tandon had read in court that not all were fortunate to hear, she was eloquent; it was heart wrenching; and though many may have heard the words of this widow, not all listened.

I am attaching the link to the article regarding the results of the sentencing:

You may also google search for the cached articles regarding this case.

Also see news media coverage: Deepika Interview

Public Baby Shower


  1. This is why we have drunks killing and injuring innocent people. Edward John Schaefer of Novato, California, had 6 prior DUI's before he murdered a 9 year old girl by driving drunk. Judges are too lenient. A drunk in Butte County is on probation for DUI. He recently violated his probation by driving drunk again. Butte County Superior Court Judge Gerald Hermansen gave the drunk probation again. What is the Judge waiting for? Is he waiting for this drunk to kill someone?

  2. I drove down a Chico street today and came upon Amit's business. I drove in to the parking lot and saw an empty building with a van outside that had the business name and Amit's name and number. I then realized how sad it was. This poor man worked so hard to build his own business to provide for his family, then this low life drunk, Troy Hovey of Chico, came along and destroyed everything.