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Vancouver man accused of DUI in fatal Vancouver crash in May

He is suspected of being high on meth; man killed in incident was going 100 mph on Lower River Road

By , Columbian staff reporter
Published:

A Vancouver man is accused of driving under the influence of methamphetamine when he was involved in a three-vehicle fatal crash in May in west Vancouver.

Jason M. Ary, 49, appeared Friday in Clark County Superior Court on suspicion of vehicular homicide, vehicular assault and driving under the influence of intoxicants. His bail was set at $50,000, and he is scheduled to be arraigned Sept. 7.

Vancouver police responded at about 11:15 p.m. May 28 for the collision in the 6100 block of Northwest Lower River Road. Officers arrived to find a Ford F-150 pickup crashed in the northbound lane of Lower River Road, and said the camper trailer the truck was towing had exploded on the roadway, according to a probable cause affidavit.

The front passenger tire of the Ford was on top of the engine compartment of a Kia Soul, which was severely damaged. In the field to the east of the crash was a Acura TL with the roof ripped off and the engine destroyed, the affidavit states.

The driver of the Ford, identified as Ary, was trapped inside the truck when officers arrived. The driver of the Kia and his passenger were also trapped inside their car. The driver of the Acura, identified as Thomas Laver, was pronounced dead at the scene, court records state.

After emergency responders extricated him from the truck, Ary was taken to PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center. He suffered multiple broken ribs, a lacerated kidney and a broken back, according to court records.

The driver and passenger of the Kia were also taken to local hospitals. The driver suffered two broken femurs and a broken wrist. The passenger suffered a broken nose, a broken vertebra and a lacerated spleen, the affidavit states.

Investigators determined there were two crashes.

The first crash occurred when Ary was traveling south on Lower River Road and began making a U-turn across the other lane. Data from the Kia showed the driver made no attempt to slow or swerve to avoid the truck and crashed into it, according to court records.

The second crash occurred when Laver failed to notice the crash and collided with the side of the trailer at about 100 mph. Court records state the Acura traveled under the trailer, which sheared off the sedan’s roof.

Detectives also noted that the two-lane road, with a minimal shoulder in the area, would not have been wide enough for Ary to perform a U-turn in a single maneuver, the affidavit states.

Officers wrote in the affidavit they found several hypodermic needles around Ary’s truck; they later found small bags that appeared to contain methamphetamine. A preliminary toxicology test showed Ary tested positive for amphetamine and methamphetamine use, court records state.

The passenger in the Kia told police he and the driver had been drinking that day and had gone to Vancouver Lake to smoke marijuana. Officers noted the passenger appeared intoxicated, according to court records.

The driver of the Kia told officers he had two alcoholic drinks; officers noted he also appeared intoxicated. Preliminary toxicology results showed the driver of the Kia had nearly seven times the legal driving limit of THC — the active ingredient in marijuana — in his blood, the affidavit states. In Washington, the legal limit for driving is 5 nanograms per milliliter of THC.

The driver of the Kia has not been charged.

Laver’s family created a GoFundMe for his memorial costs and to raise money for his two children.

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