A Western Washington University student was gravely injured in a hit-run incident Wednesday night on Interstate 5 through Happy Valley, authorities said.
Lucas K. Brazier, 23, was taken by ambulance to St. Joseph hospital and later flown by helicopter to Harborview Medical Center after being hit about 10 p.m. on southbound I-5 near the Old Fairhaven Parkway off-ramp, the Washington State Patrol said.
Brazier, who is from Woodinville, was in critical condition with severe head trauma and broken legs, hospital and state patrol officials said.
A state trooper who answered a 911 call about someone crossing the freeway found Brazier unconscious in brush along the southbound shoulder between Samish Way and Old Fairhaven Parkway.
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“The trooper found a backpack in the road,” said state Trooper Heather Axtman. “He radioed, ‘I found a backpack,’ and then immediately said, ‘start me aid.’”
Brazier had head and leg injuries consistent with being struck by a vehicle, a trooper said in his report.
The driver of that vehicle didn’t stop, authorities said. Axtman said state patrol detectives checked debris found at the scene for clues to the kind of car that hit Brazier.
“Based on the evidence, we are now attempting to locate a green 1991-1996 Ford Escort or a 1991-1996 Mercury Tracer,” Axtman said. “The vehicle should have damage to the front passenger side headlight area and the passenger side windshield.”
WWU spokesman Paul Cocke said Brazier is a junior with an undeclared major.
According to Brazier’s Facebook page, he attended Redmond High and the private Chrysalis School.
Axtman said troopers didn’t find a disabled car nearby or learn any reason why Brazier was on the freeway.
She said the driver who hit Brazier and left him for dead could face a felony charge of vehicular assault.
If the driver had stopped, it’s likely that the incident would have been Brazier’s fault, she said.
“It’s dark right there. It’s not lighted,” Axtman said. “And you’re not expecting a human to be on the freeway.”
Anyone with information about the incident is urged to call Washington State Patrol Det. Charles Sletten, 360-654-1144; via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.