Prosecutors have not yet received an investigation recommending charges against the driver in a single-vehicle crash in early May on Spirit Lake Memorial Highway that injured him and killed his passenger.

Shad Mathers, 45, of Kelso had been driving at a high rate of speed when his vehicle left the eastbound highway and hit a tree near milepost 1 several minutes after 11:30 p.m. on May 2, according to the Washington State Patrol.

His passenger, Elisa Handley-Mason, 47, of Castle Rock, died in the crash. Mathers was injured but survived after treatment at St. John Medical Center.

Handley-Mason’s mother, Theresa Finelli, has organized several sign-waving events with friends and family since May 2 calling on authorities to prosecute Mathers for the crash.

WSP spokesman Will Finn said in late May that because the crash involved a fatality, troopers sent out a collision technology specialist to investigate the crash scene. He said the reports from those specialists usually take at least 30 days from the time of the crash to complete.

If the investigation turns up evidence that Mathers committed a crime, the WSP will refer it to the Cowlitz County Prosecutor’s Office for charging, Finn said.

Since then, Finn has not returned multiple calls requesting an update, but Cowlitz County Prosecutor Ryan Jurvakainen confirmed Wednesday that his office had not yet received an investigation from the Washington State Patrol.

Finelli said Wednesday that she was “very upset” that no charges had yet been filed and plans to hold more demonstrations.

Get local news delivered to your inbox!

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Load comments