NBC Los Angeles reports a man has been arrested on attempted murder and other related charges after crashing his SUV into a group of Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LACSD) recruits earlier this week.
Officials say that 22-year-old Nicholas Gutierrez was driving his Honda SUV the wrong way on northbound Mills Avenue when he suddenly veered into a group of 75 LACSD recruits running in four columns through the residential neighborhood.
Most of the trainees were from Pasadena, Glendale, and Bellflower. According to a press release from Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva, victims in the crash suffered various injuries from broken bones, head trauma, and limb loss.
Sources inside the LACSD told NBC that Gutierrez might have been traveling an unfamiliar route and following directions on a cellphone app. Another driver told law enforcement investigators that they might have seen Gutierrez dozing off approximately one mile from the crash site.
Breathalyzer and field sobriety tests were administered to Gutierrez at the scene but showed no evidence of intoxication by alcohol. California Highway Patrol investigators are investigating whether Gutierrez may have been driving under the influence of marijuana or other narcotics at the time.
Sheriff Villanueva told reporters that detectives had provided enough evidence of probable cause to show that Gutierrez’s actions were intentional.
Gutierrez is currently being held at the Twin Towers Jail in downtown Los Angeles and is due to appear in court on Friday, November 18.