Family of woman killed in double fatal crash involving deputy wait for answers

MIDDLEBURG, Fla. -- It's been six months since a double fatal crash involving a Clay County Sheriff's Deputy and family members of the woman hit by the officer are still asking questions.

Just two months ago First Coast News uncovered the history of on-duty traffic incidents for the officer. Florida Highway Patrol is still conducting its investigation and have not determined if the deputy will face charges. The family says they just need final word on what happened to get closure.

Related: Two killed in deputy involved Clay County crash

December 21 was a nightmare for Lillian Johnson. That night a Florida Highway Patrol trooper knocked on her door.

"They said it was a crash and I said tell me that everybody is okay and they said Shanice died at the scene," said Johnson. "At that point I didn't know what to do."

Six months later, she still can't believe what happened to her daughter, Shanice Johnson, 23, on County Road 209. She says it breaks her heart to hear her granddaughter ask for her mother.

"She always look at me and says 'where's mommy? Mommy's in heaven?'" said Lillian.

According to reports from Florida Highway Patrol, Johnson was traveling southbound with her 2-year-old daughter in the backseat. She crossed the double yellow lines after a curve and crashed into an on-coming car.

Johnson's car spun and ended up facing north on the southbound lane. The second car was resting on the grass shoulder, and the driver of that vehicle was deceased.

Then the next impact came.

Clay County Sheriff's Deputy Bryant Wiggins said he did not see Johnson's car and slammed into it going 66 miles per hour in a 55 mile per hour zone.

Related: Clay deputy in fatal crash has history behind the wheel

How did Johnson Die?

Johnson's death is difficult to accept, but the family says what's even more difficult is dealing with what they don't know.

The crash report for the second impact says Johnson was ejected from her car and landed on the ground near the left rear tires, but the medical examiner reports say Johnson died from injuries sustained in the first crash. The FHP report found Johnson had her seatbelt on in the first impact, but not the second.

"It's a big doubt to me because I feel like maybe from the first crash she wasn't dead right away and being as though she had the baby in the car that she could have taken off her seat belt to look at the baby," said Lillian.

The family says they pray outside their house at a memorial they made for Shanice, where they scattered her ashes. They're just hoping FHP's final report will finally have some answers and closure.

Clay County Sheriff's deputy Wiggins was suspended for three days without pay and given two points on his record with the department, by a disciplinary board, but no traffic citation. Records show he's had over ten accidents in three years while driving in a marked vehicle. He's been found chargeable four times before.


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