Man arrested for allegedly intentionally driving a car off cliff with wife, 2 children

Man arrested for allegedly intentionally driving a car off cliff with wife, 2 children

A Southern California man has been arrested for attempted murder and child abuse after California Highway Patrol officials say he intentionally drove a Tesla over a cliff with his wife and two children in the car.

PHOTO: A crash victim is lifted to a helicopter during a rescue operation after a vehicle carrying two adults and two children went over a cliff in Devil's Slide, San Mateo county, Calif. Jan. 2, 2023. (Chp/Golden Gate Division Air Operations via Reuters)
PHOTO: A crash victim is lifted to a helicopter during a rescue operation after a vehicle carrying two adults and two children went over a cliff in Devil's Slide, San Mateo county, Calif. Jan. 2, 2023. (Chp/Golden Gate Division Air Operations via Reuters)

The driver of the car, Dharmesh A. Patel, of Pasadena, California, is being treated for his injuries and will be booked into San Mateo County Jail upon his release from the hospital, according to CHP.

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According to Patel's arrest report, the other occupants of the car were a 41-year-old female, a 7-year-old female and a 4-year-old male.

Investigators were not able to determine what driving mode the Tesla was in, but CHP said it does not appear to be a contributing factor in the incident.

CHP received a call about a vehicle plunging over a cliff on Highway 1, south of the Tom Lantos tunnels, CHP said in a statement to ABC News.

PHOTO: View from the helicopter during a rescue operation after a vehicle carrying two adults and two children that went over a cliff in Devil's Slide, San Mateo county, Calif., Jan. 2, 2023. (Chp/Golden Gate Division Air Operations via Reuters)
PHOTO: View from the helicopter during a rescue operation after a vehicle carrying two adults and two children that went over a cliff in Devil's Slide, San Mateo county, Calif., Jan. 2, 2023. (Chp/Golden Gate Division Air Operations via Reuters)

CHP officers and additional emergency personnel arrived at the scene and saw a white Tesla about 250 to 300 feet down the cliff, according to CHP.

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Emergency personnel rappelled down to the vehicle and found two adults and two children inside, according to CHP.

All four people were successfully rescued from the car and taken to the local hospital with serious injuries, according to CHP.

CHP officers interviewed witnesses and gathering evidence from the scene. Based on evidence gathered, investigators developed probable cause to believe the accident was an intentional act, according to CHP.

CHP said it does not charge people for crimes, it only recommends charges after an arrest. It will ultimately be up to the district attorney whether charges will be brought against Patel.

The investigation remains ongoing and CHP said it will not release any further information at this time.

Man arrested for allegedly intentionally driving a car off cliff with wife, 2 children originally appeared on abcnews.go.com