Child struck by car, killed in East Price Hill

By Stefano DiPietrantonio – bio |email|Facebook

EAST PRICE HILL, OH (FOX19) - A tragic and sad story out of East Price Hill. An 8-year-old boy was struck and killed by a car. It is every parent's worst nightmare, especially for those with kids who walk to and from school.

The family of 8-year-old Devar Johnson said he was walking home from school, on the way to his grandmother's house at the top of Grand Avenue, when a car struck and killed him at the corner of Glenway and Grand avenues.

"He was coming home," his 15-year-old brother Damier Whitney said. "Going to my grandma's house, which is where we at, because my mom was going to pick him up."

The family of 8-year-old Devar Johnson said the boy had just been ushered across the street by the crossing guard at the corner of Glenway and Grand, when police said a car driven by 24-year-old Yolanda Washington, lost control and struck him. Police say Washington was wearing her seatbelt, as was a passenger in her car, Starlette Washington.

"The vehicle that struck the child, it did leave the roadway we don't know exactly where the youngster was when he was hit," said Sergeant Danita Kilgore, spokesperson for the Cincinnati Police Department.

Police said the car came up over the sidewalk and landed in the front yard of an apartment building and killing Johnson.

"People were saying different things," said Devar's cousin, Nicole Johnson. "There was a little girl, he, Devar, had hit in the back of the neck or something like that and she was chasing him, and from what they said, he had stepped back, he was running from her, he had stepped back and he got hit from the back."

Johnson said her cousin Devar was a bright, fun kid.

"And I just broke down and started crying," Johnson said. "I just broke down."

Nicole called Devar's big brother, 15-year-old Damier Whitney, who was at football practice when the accident happened.

"I was in the locker room," Whitney said. "Everybody getting pumped-up for the game, and I got the call and I just came here."

And when his mother confirmed what he'd been told on the phone, Whitney said he still couldn't believe his baby brother was gone.

"I really didn't even cry because it was more like a 'Devar died' I was like 'Oh shut up!', even though no matter how much they told me and they sweared up and down you know, I couldn't believe it, it was just yeah, whatever," he said.

Whitney said there are already several accounts circulating around the neighborhood, that the Washington's brakes failed.

"Somebody in a car they got airbags," Whitney said. "They had a better chance of living than hitting an 8-year-old with a car, but I can't blame it on her, she didn't purposely hit him with it."

Whitney said his family just wants the truth.

"What's the truth?," he asked. "Did you really run out of brakes, or was you really on the phone not paying attention?"

No one has those answers yet, but the police said neither Washington, nor her passenger, were injured in the crash.

No word yet on what charges she may be facing. That will be up to the Hamilton County Prosecutor's Office.

Devar Johnson was a third-grade student at Rees E Price school just up the street from where the accident happened.

Many of his classmates witnessed the accident, so Tuesday no doubt , will be a tough day back to school without him.

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