SAN MATEO COUNTY, Calif. (KRON) — The driver of a Tesla that crashed off Highway 1 in San Mateo County Monday was arrested for attempted murder and child abuse, California Highway Patrol said Tuesday. Investigators believe the man crashed the car, which was carrying two young children, intentionally.
Pasadena resident Dharmesh Arvind Patel, 41, was arrested. CHP said he is currently being treated for his injuries at a hospital and will be booked into San Mateo County Jail upon his release.
“CHP investigators worked throughout the night interviewing witnesses and gathering evidence from the scene,” CHP said. “Based on the evidence collected, investigators developed probable cause to believe this incident was an intentional act.”
The car was driving along Highway 1 near Devil’s Slide when it crashed over a cliff, falling 250-300 feet. There were four occupants: Patel, a 41-year-old woman, a 7-year-old girl and a 4-year-old boy.
CHP used a helicopter to rappel down the cliff and rescue the occupants. The victims were hospitalized with serious injuries, CHP said.
CHP does not know what driving mode the Tesla was in at the time of the crash, but does not believe that to be a factor.
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Officials are continuing to investigate the crash. Any witnesses are asked to contact the CHP – San Francisco Area at (415) 557-1094.