SAN MATEO COUNTY, Calif. (NewsNation) — Recently unsealed court records reveal more about why a California doctor drove his family off of a cliff in January.
In January, Dharmesh Patel, 41, his wife, and their children aged 4 and 7 were driving south on the Pacific Coast Highway when their car plunged more than 200 feet off a cliff, NewsNation affiliate KRON4 of California reported. All family members survived the crash.
In February, Patel was charged with three counts of attempted murder with enhancements for the injuries he caused to his wife and daughter. He pleaded not guilty.
San Mateo County District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe told “Banfield” on Thursday night that Patel’s statement, revealed in the documents, about tire pressure “doesn’t fit” with traffic camera video.
Patel “claimed he had pulled over to check his tire pressure, which the Tesla indicated was low earlier that morning,” court records said.
“If one is having trouble with their tires, one would slowly move to the side of the road. Anybody would. That’s not what occurred here. … It didn’t look like what any reasonable person would be doing,” Wagstaffe said on “Banfield.”
Additionally, Patel’s wife may be recanting her claims that Patel crashed the car “on purpose.”
“He drove off. He’s depressed. He’s a doctor. He said he was going to drive off the cliff. He purposely drove off,” Patel’s wife told authorities, according to court records.
However, in February, Patel’s attorney, Joshua Bentley, told a judge that Patel’s wife didn’t want him to face charges, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.
Wagstaffe added that they’re still waiting on a “crucial” piece of evidence in the case. The California Highway Patrol is waiting for an investigation team to do an “A-Z” look at Patel’s Tesla.
“We’re looking forward to that report as significant evidence about the tires,” Wagstaffe said.