After a Tesla sedan went over the cliff near Pacifica along the Pacific Coast Highway on January 2nd with a Pasadena family inside, the entire family survived and was hospitalized with serious injuries.
Now, the father who was driving, Dharmesh A. Patel, 41, has been released from the hospital and booked into a local jail, potentially facing charges of suspicion of attempted murder and child abuse, news outlets reported this weekend.
Driver of Tesla That Went Over Calif. Cliff with His Family Inside Moved to Jail from Hospital https://t.co/dO9cdmYolK— MSN (@MSN) January 28, 2023
Patel, who is a reportedly a doctor in Los Angles, could be arraigned Monday if the San Mateo District Attorney's Office decides to file criminal charges, according to the Mercury News.
The rescue and survival of Patel, his 41-year-old wife, 7-year-old daughter and 4-year-old son, had originally been heralded as a miracle, as the area about 20 miles away from downtown San Francisco in which the wreck occurred is known as Devils Slide and is infamous for fatal wrecks. Indeed, Patel’s white Tesla Model 3 plunged about 250 feet off the side of the steep cliff at around 11 a.m. on Jan. 2, the California Highway Patrol said in a press release at the time.
However, California Highway Patrol investigators reportedly said they "developed probable cause to believe this incident was an intentional act,” according to ABC7.
Pasadena father intentionally drove Tesla off NorCal cliff with his 2 kids, wife in car, CHP says https://t.co/rA6aMhvtf0— ABC7 Eyewitness News (@ABC7) January 4, 2023
San Mateo District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said that investigation is still ongoing, and officers are still examining the vehicle to make sure there were no other underlying mechanical issues like brake malfunctions or self-driving mode concerns.
Now that Patel is in jail, he reportedly could be arraigned as early as Monday afternoon if Wagstaffe's office decides to file charges.
Image via Unsplash/Karsten Koehn.