The driver of the Tesla that plunged over 250 feet off a San Mateo highway on Monday has reportedly been detained for attempted murder and child abuse, according to Californian authorities.
According to the California Highway Patrol, the driver of the car when it overturned at the Devil’s Slide location on a coastal road was Dharmesh A. Patel of Pasadena, California (CHP). Two unnamed children and another adult were also present inside.
All four were rescued and taken to a nearby hospital for treatment of what the CHP describes as significant wounds. The other adult was a 41-year-old lady, and the two children were a boy, 4, and a girl, 7, according to charging records.
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What kind of connection they have to Patel is not made clear in the documents. Later, the California Highway Patrol identified them as being his wife and kids. Patel was placed under arrest on Tuesday.
according to the CHP, who also stated that although he is currently receiving medical attention for his wounds, he would be checked into the San Mateo County Jail as soon as he is discharged.
Man drives his #Tesla with his family inside off a cliff intentionally. Everyone survives now the father is facing attempted murder 😳 pic.twitter.com/OWMYRHa4DD
— No Jumper (@nojumper) January 4, 2023
“CHP detectives interviewed witnesses and collected evidence from the scene all night long. Investigators established probable cause to think this incident was an intentional act based on the facts gathered “CHP said.
According to the criminal papers, Patel, 42, was taken into custody at about 9 p.m. on Monday and did not put up any resistance. The CHP stated that authorities are still looking into the collision and that “it is unknown what driving mode the Tesla was in.”
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Regardless of the driving mode that was selected—manual or self-driving—the CHP stated that it “does not appear to be a contributing factor in this event.” No other information is being disclosed at this time because this investigation is still underway, according to the CHP. Note from the editor: This story has been updated to reflect Patel’s arrest but lack of charges. Reporting was provided by The Associated Press.
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