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News / Clark County News

Bail set at $500,000 for Vancouver woman in hit-and-run that killed a man near a Vancouver WinCo

Judge sets arraignment for July 22

By Alexis Weisend, Columbian staff reporter
Published: July 10, 2024, 4:30pm

A judge set bail at $500,000 for a Vancouver woman accused in a Monday hit-and-run that killed a man sitting under a tree by WinCo on Northeast Andresen Road.

Luella F. Roberson, 32, made her first appearance Wednesday in Clark County Superior Court. She faces allegations of vehicular homicide and hit-and-run after Vancouver police officers say they tracked her down along the Burnt Bridge Creek Trail.

Judge Robert Lewis set her arraignment for July 22.

Initially, police were dispatched shortly before 1 p.m. to the WinCo at 2101 N.E. Andresen Road in central Vancouver for a hit-and-run crash. The report said there was disturbance between two women in a silver or gold Subaru, and the driver possibly struck other cars. Officers could not locate the suspect or any damaged vehicles, according to a probable cause affidavit.

However, officers were dispatched back to the location less than 20 minutes later for a possibly deceased man under a tree. The man was pronounced dead at the scene, according to the affidavit. Authorities have not released his identity or cause and manner of death.

Officers reviewed video of the incident and saw a silver Subaru stop within the WinCo parking lot. The driver accelerated rapidly, driving over a curb, through the brush and back onto the pavement, before exiting the parking lot. In the affidavit, an officer noted tire marks on either side of the man’s body. Scraping and crushing wounds indicated the vehicle drove over him, the affidavit said.

Officers followed the tire tracks to the parking lot of a nearby townhome complex, where the Subaru was parked in the middle of the road, according to the affidavit. A police K-9 tracked down Roberson — whom police say fit the description of the driver and had the keys to the car in her pocket — on the Burnt Bridge Creek Trail walking away from the car, the affidavit states.

Roberson allegedly acknowledged she was the driver of the Subaru, but she said she was unaware she struck someone. Officers found she did not have a valid driver’s license, according to the affidavit.

Though Roberson was not found to be impaired at the time of the incident, she was detoxing from fentanyl, Senior Deputy Prosecutor Jeff McCarty said at Wednesday’s first appearance.

The affidavit said the initial evidence showed the victim’s manner of death was primarily caused by being struck and driven over by a vehicle.

Roberson’s defense attorney, Michelle Michalek, contested the officer’s statement. “He’s not qualified to make that determination,” Michalek said.

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