SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS RADIO) – The wife of a Tesla driver who allegedly drove his family off a cliff in the South Bay has accused her husband of intentionally trying to kill the family.
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On January 2, Dharmesh Patel, a 40-year-old doctor from Pasadena, was driving his Tesla SUV through the tunnel at Devil's Slide between Pacifica and Montara when the vehicle plunged over a cliff — his wife, 4-year-old son and 7-year-old daughter in tow.
California Highway Patrol officers arrested Patel the day after the crash at Stanford Hospital. On Monday, Patel was charged with attempted murder by San Mateo County prosecutors.
"We know what the motive was, he didn't want any of them to live any longer, is what we've charged," San Mateo County District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said during a press conference. "But what led to this, what has caused this, what was the trigger?"
"He intentionally tried to kill us," wife Neha Patel told investigators.
Witnesses of the crash reported that the Tesla never applied the brakes before going over the cliff. A video of the vehicle from a camera near the site corroborated these statements.
One of the children has been released from the hospital, while the other is still recovering. The mother is still hospitalized. Dharmesh has recovered enough to be transported to the San Mateo County Jail.
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