A man who allegedly drove his car onto a sidewalk and into a bunch of individuals is being held on three counts of vehicular manslaughter and other fees, San Diego Police Chief David Nisleit said at a press conference on Monday afternoon.
Craig Voss, 71, of San Diego, faces five counts of causing great bodily injury while committing a felony and one count of driving under the influence, Nisleit explained.
Three individuals died at scene at downtown San Diego and six others were hurt, Fire Chief Colin Stowell said.
Mayor Todd Gloria said most or all the people gathered on the underpass sidewalk were homeless.
Nisleit stated many of the people were seeking shelter from the rain in the tunnel.
“I don’t understand if folks were sleeping, if people were sitting there,” Nisleit said. He said it appeared many tents and personal belongings were placed along the sidewalk.
After the vehicle ran into the crowd and came to a halt in the road, the driver of the Volvo station wagon attempted to render aid and identified himself to officers, the police chief said.
The motorist was cooperative and did not attempt to leave the area, the chief said in an earlier news conference. Authorities said initially that the driver had fled the scene prior to being detained.
The police chief said at least 2 people who were taken into the hospital were in serious illness.
Police received a radio call a few minutes prior to the crash, about a vehicle fitting the description of the Volvo, but officials weren’t after him at the time of the episode, Nisleit explained.
He said the automobile”for whatever reasonit veered into the right and went up on the sidewalk” The car went back into the street where it stopped and the driver got out, Nisleit said.
The episode, reported only after 9 a.m. PT, occurred from the 1500 block of B Street near San Diego City College.
“The way he was driving down the sidewalk, it was like that he didn’t take his foot off the gas before he got to the other side of the road,” watch Ronnie Williams told CNN affiliate KGTV because he sat on the sidewalk.
“I’m like whoa! Is this guy ever gonna stop?” Williams said that the driver exited his vehicle and hid his face and”casually walked off.”
Another witness, Michael Luke, told KGTV that the motorist remained in the scene and looked distraught.
“I watched the wagon move above and things just started popping up. .
The investigation is continuing.