Vancouver woman arrested in Carey hit-and-run case

Teen Justin Carey waited in the shrubs for 90 minutes

By Patty Hastings, Columbian Social Services, Demographics, Faith



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

Justin Carey, 16, was standing on the corner of Northeast 82nd Avenue and 289th Street 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 for 90 minutes until after a tow-truck driver heard a faint “Help” from the shrubs. 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.

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.

She faces charges of vehicular assault and possession of methamphetamine.

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 looks to do competitive shooting through 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 was planning to take the driving test after school the day he was hit.

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