Tiger Woods Issues Statement On Accident Investigation, Thanks First Responders, Does Not Mention Speeding Allegation — Updated

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UPDATED with latest: Shortly after the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department released information about the cause of his car crash in February, Tiger Woods issued a statement. It did not address the department’s conclusion that he was speeding.

“In the last few days, I received word from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department that their investigation regarding my traffic accident back on February 23rd in Los Angeles has been completed and closed,” wrote Woods. “I am so grateful to both of the good Samaritans who came to assist me and called 911. I am also thankful to the LASD deputies and L.A. firefighter/paramedics, especially L.A. sheriff’s Deputy Carlos Gonzalez and LAFD Engine Co #106 fire paramedics Smith and Gimenez, for helping me so expertly at the scene and getting me safely to the hospital.

“I will continue to focus on my recovery and family,” he wrote, “and thank everyone for the overwhelming support and encouragement I’ve received throughout this very difficult time.”

There has been little information on Woods’ condition since the crash, although he has been tweeting about golf and congratulating PGA and LPGA competitors as well as athletes from his alma mater, Stanford.

PREVIOUSLY at 10:34: Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva has confirmed that speed was the primary cause of the crash that injured Tiger Woods in Rancho Palos Verdes. Villanueva says the vehicle Woods was driving was traveling at 84- 87 mph when it initially crashed into a median, then 75 mph when it struck a tree alongside Hawthorne Boulevard. According to the Los Angeles Times, that stretch of road is a 45 mph zone.

Sheriff’s officials said they believe golfer Tiger Woods inadvertently pressed the accelerator instead of the brake on the SUV he was driving when it crashed in Rancho Palos Verdes on Feb. 23.

James C. Powers, captain of the sheriff’s station in the area said Woods hit the median, then a sign and then struck the curb on the opposite side of the street before ramming into a tree 71 feet off the road.

“The impact of the vehicle when it hit the tree caused it to go airborne and do a somewhat pirouette and land on its side,” said Powers.

When the airbags deployed, the car’s data recorder showed speeds before and after the impact with the median of 82 mph to 86 mph.

Powers said the data recorder showed pressure applied to the accelerator during the collision was at 99%.

“There was no evidence of braking through the collision,” said Powers. He then speculated that Woods might have “hit the accelerator instead of the brake pedal.”

Villanueva said no citations have been issued, no blood was drawn and there were no signs of any impairment from Woods. The department also did not obtain any phone records to determine if Woods was using his cell phone at the time. The sheriff called any idea that Woods received special treatment “absolutely false.”

“Without the signs of impairment,” said Villanueva, “we don’t get to the point where we can author a search warrant and develop probable cause to execute that search warrant.” In response the allegations based on Woods’ prior history of intoxicated driving, Villanueva maintained that prior history “does not give you probable cause.”

Officers at a news conference defended Villanueva’s assertion after the accident that no crime had been committed. They said that speeding is classified as a misdemeanor, and so consistent with the Sheriff’s assertion. They also defended the decision not to issue Woods a citation. “We’re not going to issue an infraction that was not committed in a peace officer’s presence,” said a spokesperson.

Villanueva said that, per the California vehicle code, the details of such an investigation were usually kept private. But, said the sheriff, Woods allowed the report to be shared with the public.

Woods’ crashed his SUV in a single-car accident on Hawthorne Boulevard in Rancho Palos Verdes. He was taken to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center in Torrance and underwent surgery on two “comminuted open fractures affecting both the upper and lower portions of the tibia and fibula” and a broken ankle, according to a post on Woods’ Twitter feed last night.

The SUV Woods was driving was headed northbound and downhill on Hawthorne Boulevard in Rancho Palos Verdes when crossed the median into the incoming lane. With Woods the only person in the vehicle, it then smashed through signs, sheared a tree, hit the curb, rolled and crashed off the side of the residential street just before 7:12 AM that day.

Woods was taken to the hospital with multiple compound fractures in his legs and underwent surgery for hours. He was released in mid-March, thanking fans for their support.

City News Service contributed to this report.

This article was printed from https://deadline.com/2021/04/tiger-woods-driving-84-mph-in-45-mph-zone-crash-sheriff-1234729519/