the 41-year-old poses "an alarming danger to the public"
A US Indian doctor who allegedly tried to kill his family by driving their car off a 250-foot cliff, known as Devil’s Side, has been banned from practising medicine.
Radiologist Dharmesh Patel pleaded not guilty to three counts of attempted murder after his Tesla veered off the Pacific Coast Highway south of San Francisco and plunged from the cliff on January 2, 2023.
His children, aged four and seven, and wife Neha Patel were in the car.
Just before 11 am, officers were called to help with the rescue.
Firefighters brought the children to the road on stretchers and then to a nearby hospital.
Both adults, who suffered non-life-threatening injuries, were hoisted onto a helicopter and taken to the highway, where they were transferred to a hospital by air ambulance.
Brian Pottenger, the battalion chief of the Coastside Fire Protection District’s San Mateo-Santa Cruz unit, said at the time:
“It is very unusual for anyone to survive an accident of this magnitude in this area.”
After his release from hospital, Patel was arrested and has been held in San Mateo’s Maguire Correctional Facility since.
The doctor has now been banned from practising medicine after a successful application from the Medical Board of California.
Regulators argued that the ban was necessary because the 41-year-old poses “an alarming danger to the public” in light of an “impairment of cognitive abilities needed to safely practice medicine”.
Judge Rachel Holt granted the request on June 12, 2023, after postponing Patel’s preliminary hearing.
This comes after his wife revealed that her husband stated his intention to die moments before the crash.
According to court documents, as Mrs Patel was airlifted, she told an officer:
“He drove off. He’s depressed.
“He said he was going to drive off the cliff. He purposely drove off.”
Despite the comment, Patel’s defence attorney Josh Bentley previously said that his wife did not want her husband prosecuted.
Patel – who is on limited contact with his family – claimed he pulled off the road to check on a potentially flat tyre.
But witness testimony does not appear to support his account.
He was seen driving at speed northbound on Highway 1 and he is speculated to have performed a sharp turn before reaching the Tom Lantos Tunnel, which is where the Tesla veered off the road, first onto a dirt area and then down the cliff.