He was driving the car that hit a student crossing the freeway, state patrol says.


A Sedro-Woolley man has been arrested in connection with a hit-run incident last week that badly injured a Western Washington University student, authorities said.

Luis Gomez Gutierrez, 51, was booked Monday afternoon into Whatcom County Jail on suspicion of hit and run accident with injury. He remained in custody, with a first appearance in court scheduled for Tuesday afternoon.

Gutierrez is the suspected driver of a vehicle that struck Lucas K. Brazier, 23, as Brazier walked across southbound Interstate 5 about 10 p.m. Jan. 31, said Washington State Patrol Trooper Heather Axtman. The driver didn’t stop or call 911, Axtman said.

A trooper investigating a 911 call about someone walking on the freeway found a backpack and then located Brazier in bushes along the shoulder south of Samish Way, Axtman said.

Brazier, who is from Woodinville, was taken by ambulance to St. Joseph hospital and later flown by helicopter to Harborview Medical Center, where was listed in serious condition Monday with head injuries and broken legs, hospital and state patrol officials said.

Axtman said detectives provided no details of the arrest or investigation Tuesday.

Debris at the scene pointed toward a green 1991-1996 Ford Escort or a 1991-1996 Mercury Tracer with damage to the front passenger-side headlight area and the passenger-side windshield, Axtman said last week.

Hit and run causing injury is a class C felony under Washington state law. Punishment is five years in prison or a fine of up to $10,000, or both.

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.

Robert Mittendorf: 360-756-2805, @BhamMitty

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