D.C. Police are searching for the driver of a stolen minivan who struck a 22-year-old D.C. woman in the Shaw neighborhood Saturday night, severely injuring her.
The woman was crossing Rhode Island Avenue around 9:30 p.m. when she was struck by the van. Her injuries were so massive that she wasn't expected to survive at first.
She has now regained consciousness and spoke to News4 by phone from her hospital bed.
"After he hit me, he ran over me again, and I became unconscious. I know I felt afterward, 'I am dying,'" said the woman, who asked that her name not be used.
A witness told police that the victim was thrown several feet into the air, and was then dragged another several feet by the minivan, which then sped away.
Police later learned the minivan had been stolen in Georgetown less than an hour before the collision.
The initial impact is the last thing the victim, a home health care worker, remembers before waking up in the hospital. "I was in intensive care for three days," she said.
A cousin was at her bedside Friday afternoon. "He ran her over [and] then he ran her over after," said her cousin. "He hit her again to get away.... It's devastating, how a person can just do that and walk away. It's horrible."
The victim's recovery will be a long one. She fractured her skull and right arm. "She had two chest tubes in because she had so much fluid in her lungs, because her ribs were crushed," said the cousin.
D.C. police are looking for the driver of the stolen van, which was discovered Sunday, the day after the crash. The owner of the van had reported it stolen from the 3200 block of O Street NW.
Police have released images of the van, a 1998 white Ford Windstar van with D.C. tags. They are still looking for the person who struck the victim.
"Hopefully, justice will be served, but we're just focusing on her recovery right now," said the victim's cousin.
Anyone with information is asked to contact police.