Vancouver woman arrested in hit and run

The Columbian (Vancouver, Wash.)October 20, 2013 

A Vancouver woman accused of crashing her car into a Battle Ground teen four months ago while he waited for the school bus was arrested Friday afternoon.

Justin Carey, 16, was standing on a corner at 7 a.m., June 10, when the crash occurred. After the collision, the driver, Shaun Johnson, 46, didn’t tell authorities she hit somebody with her Nissan Maxima.

Carey wasn’t discovered until after a tow-truck driver arrived 90 minutes later and heard a faint “Help.” The teen was flown in a Life Flight helicopter to PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center. Carey suffered two broken femurs and eventually developed an infection that forced him to have the lower half of his right leg amputated.

Over the last few months, he’s undergone multiple surgeries and was fitted for a prosthetic leg. He returned to Battle Ground High School in September for his junior year.

Johnson’s arrest follows a months-long investigation by the Clark County Sheriff’s Office Traffic Unit. She faces charges of vehicular assault and possession of methamphetamine.

Detective Todd Young called Carey’s mother, Janette Chumley, this week to let her know police were searching for Johnson. Friday, she was booked into the Clark County Jail.

Chumley said it’s a mixed emotion. Although Johnson is being held accountable for crashing into her child, the family doesn’t wish ill on anybody.

“We’re not angry,” she said.

Instead, she applauds the sheriff’s office for its thorough investigation as well as the community for supporting her son. He’s been asking about the case every day and plans to be involved in the court proceedings.

Johnson should appear in Clark County Superior Court on Monday — the same day that Carey will get his new prosthetic leg. He chose a titanium and carbon-fiber leg, called a Plie, which gives him enough maneuverability to continue the Air Rifle Team as part of the Junior ROTC program at school. He’s able to pivot his new foot and kneel down, and the leg contains a computer micro-processing chip that senses his body movements. He wants to do competitive shooting during college.

Now that his original dream of joining the military is no longer viable, Carey must envision a new future.

His first goal? Getting a car and his driver’s license. He had been planning to take the driving test after school the day he was hit.

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