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U.S. man charged after driving off cliff with family

by News Desk
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Redwood City, California –

WARNING: This article contains references to suicide.

The driver who seriously injured his wife and two young children when his car fell off a dangerous cliff in northern California was charged with attempted murder on Monday.

Dharmesh A. Patel, 41, also faces serious injuries and mounting domestic violence in the Jan. 2 crash, San Mateo County District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said in a statement.

Wagstaff told the San Francisco Chronicle that testimony from family members, motorists, and video footage from the nearby Tom Lantos Tunnel provided enough evidence to charge the father of the two children. rice field.

Hospitalized Patel’s wife “yelled” at paramedics about her husband’s “deliberateness” after they rappelled down a 76-meter (250-foot) cliff to rescue the family said Wagstaff. He declined to share what she said.

“I am confident that the necessary intent to kill has been demonstrated,” Wagstaff told the newspaper.

Patel’s attorney, Josh Bentley, did not immediately respond to an emailed request for comment.

Patel was due to be arraigned on Monday, but Bentley asked for an extension until February 9, which the judge granted. ordered to leave.

Patel, a radiologist at a hospital in Southern California, was seriously injured after his car drove over a 250-foot (76-meter) cliff at Devil’s Slide, an area along the Pacific Coast Highway about 15 miles (24 kilometers). was taken to hospital. ) south of San Francisco known for deadly shipwrecks. On Friday he was transferred to prison.

Rescuers initially hailed the family’s survival as a miracle. Firefighters had to carve out a Tesla Model Y to rescue Patel’s family, including his 41-year-old wife, 7-year-old daughter, and 4-year-old son.

Patel was later arrested after California Highway Patrol investigators “found reasonable grounds for believing the incident to be a deliberate act,” the agency said.

Wagstaff said his office is trying to determine why Patel drove off the cliff. Wagstaff said Patel had not spoken to investigators since the Jan. 2 crash.

“We’re looking into what led to this. Was there depression or something else?” Wagstaff said. “Not only did he try to kill them, he also tried to kill himself.”

If you or someone you know is in crisis, here are some resources available in Canada.

Canada Suicide Prevention Helpline (1-833-456-4566)

Addiction and Mental Health Center (1 800 463-2338)

Crisis Services Canada (1-833-456-4566 or text 45645)

Kids Help Phone (1-800-668-6868)

If you need immediate help, call 911 or go to the nearest hospital.

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