Prosecutors in California said in courtroom Monday that a man has been arrested with 3 attempts to murder after he reportedly drove his vehicle over a cliff near the beach without his spouse and two children inside.

The prosecution claims that Dharmesh Patel, 41, deliberately drove his Tesla off the Devil’s Slide on the Pacific Coast Highway, plummeting his family of four around 250 feet to the rocky shore below. The four people in the family were all lucky enough to get away from the accident alive.

A press conference held by San Mateo County Prosecutor Steve Wagstaffe on Monday revealed that two of the three charges against Patel have domestic violence and grievous bodily harm enhancements.

And How Many People Were Hurt?

Wagstaffe said that both Patel and his wife, who he described as having had “serious injuries,” remain hospitalised, and that the couple’s 7-year-old kid was also hurt, but the severity of the youngster’s injuries is unknown.

Wagstaffe stated, “Fortunately, the 4-year-old emerged with just minor bruising, which does not qualifying for substantial bodily damage.” The enhancements were not included in the third charge because of this miracle.

The California State Highway Patrol had earlier reported that the driver’s wife and two kids were in the car with him when the accident occurred, but they were not specifically mentioned in the court filings.

Patel had his first court appearance on Monday in San Mateo County, but he did not enter a plea. His next court date is scheduled for February 9.

Judge Jeffrey Finigan of the Superior Court has ordered that Patel be detained without bail. Attorney Joshua Bentley has said that a request for bail would be filed on Patel’s behalf at a later time. Bentley denied an interview request from CNN to discuss the issue.

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As To Why He Attempted Murder, Exactly?

There is adequate evidence from security cameras and eyewitness reports, Wagstaffe said, to indicate that Patel’s conduct on January 2 were purposeful, but investigators are still trying to piece together his motivation. He stated his wife made a “incriminating” statement to responding officers but didn’t provide specifics.

Because her lawyer has declined interviews until she is “physically ready to do so,” Wagstaffe said, prosecutors have not yet been able to talk with Patel’s wife.

Prosecutors had requested a no-contact order from Finigan, but she instead issued a no-harassment order, which the district attorney claimed meant Patel could have “peaceful and non-threatening” communication with his wife and kids.

District attorney: “At this moment, there is no evidence to suggest that Patel’s Tesla was experiencing a malfunction somewhere at time of the event.” The major highway patrol is now inspecting the vehicle to establish whether there were any problems. He also said that prosecutors anticipate it would take many months to complete the investigation.

According to Wagstaffe, Patel has been hospitalised after the collision, but prosecutors were notified on Friday that he will soon be released and put into prison.

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So, What Do The Witnesses Say?

He noted that while the family normally resides in Pasadena, it seems they were in the region to visit relatives at the time the incident occurred.

Elizabeth Wolfe, Faith Karimi, Brandon Griggs, Aya Elamroussi, Stella Chan, and Holly Yan from CNN all pitched in to help with this story.

A white Tesla automobile was found “about 200 to 250 feet down the cliff” by CHP officers and other emergency rescue professionals, according to the announcement. Officials used ropes to rappel down to the car and make touch with its four occupants, two parents and two youngsters.

According to a press release from Highway patrol Golden Gate Segment Air Operations, a technician from El Cerrito Fire was scaled back to the site of the accident and assisted in extricating and saving the two adults.

While fire crews managed to bring this same 2 kids, ages eight and five, back up toward the road securely on the ropes. Each adult was rescued from the cliff’s base on stretchers, and the spectacular rescue was captured on video.

According to the CHP’s investigation, Patel deliberately drove the Tesla down the ravine after spending the whole evening “interviewing witnesses and collecting evidence from the location.”

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What Happened Next?

San Mateo-Santa Cruz battalion head Brian Pottenger allegedly told The New York Times in an email that the passengers’ chances of survival and rescue were much improved since the car seemed to have flipped multiple times eventually landing right-side up.

“It is highly uncommon for somebody to survive an occurrence of that kind of scale in this location,” Chief Pottenger was quoted as saying to the Times. There are always automobiles going over the edge, and every time we go, we find that they have died. Next, he emphasised, “this was a great miracle.”

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Patel is a physician at Hospital Holy Cross General Hospital in Mission Hills, according to KABC, an ABC station in Los Angeles. Patel may have hired a counsel to speak on his behalf, but it was unclear at press time.

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