Man accused of driving into group of law enforcement recruits charged with attempted murder

25 LA County Sheriff’s recruits injured in Whittier crash, driver detained

25 LA County Sheriff’s recruits injured in Whittier crash, driver detained


The man accused of driving into a group of law enforcement recruits as they were training on Wednesday has been charged with attempted murder on peace officers, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s office¬†said. Other charges are pending.

Nicholas Joseph Gutierrez was arrested at 3:15 p.m. local time Wednesday. He was denied bail, according to the sheriff’s office.

Earlier that day, 25 people, including Gutierrez, were injured when the 22-year-old allegedly drove down a street the wrong way and crashed into a group of 75 law enforcement recruits who were on an early morning run. Five recruits were in critical condition as of Wednesday afternoon.

The driver passed a field sobriety test and “blew a 0.0 on a breathalyzer,” according to Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva.

“So, the cause of the accident, motive, anything, is unknown at this time,” he said Wednesday.

Paramedics set up a triage area at the scene and transported the injured to seven hospitals for treatment.

Those who were at the front of the formation could see the vehicle coming and were able to get out of the way, while those behind couldn’t see and took the brunt of the impact, Villanueva said.

Homicide detectives are continuing to investigate, the sheriff’s office said Thursday.

“The Sheriff’s Department would like to thank the Los Angeles County Fire Department, the California Highway Patrol, the incredible medical staffs who are caring for our injured personnel, the other agencies that assisted in this investigation, and the outpouring of love and support we have experienced from the community,” the sheriff’s office said in its statement.

Sarah Lynch Baldwin contributed reporting.

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