Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva announced on Wednesday that Tiger Woods won’t face criminal charges related to his single-car rollover crash Tuesday that left him hospitalized with multiple leg fractures.
Investigators will check the car’s black box to gain information about speed, but no criminal charges are expected. Villanueva confirmed the conclusion from a responding officer that there was “no evidence of impairment” in a video conference with reporters on Wednesday.
Asked if Woods might face reckless driving charges, Villanueva said no.
“This is purely an accident,” Villanueva reiterated.
The cause of the accident remains under investigation. Villanueva said that investigators hope to determine the speed of Woods’ vehicle prior to the collision and couldn’t rule out at this point if Woods was considered a distracted driver.
Distracted driving would be considered an infraction rather than a criminal charge.
“Reckless driving is actually more than an infraction,” Villanueva said. “That’s a misdemeanor crime that has a lot of elements attached to it. This is nothing like that.”
Woods ‘awake, responsive’ after surgery
Woods’ vehicle struck a median and rolled multiple times before coming to a stop in a gully several hundred feet from the initial collision. The collision occurred as Woods was driving down a steep, curvy section of a road south of Los Angeles known to a problematic for speeding drivers.
Woods was removed from his vehicle by emergency responders and taken to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center Tuesday with a shattered ankle and compound fractures in his right leg. Nobody else was in the car.
Woods underwent emergency surgery to insert rods and pins to stabilize his broken bones and address trauma to soft tissue surrounding the breaks.
Woods’ representatives announced late Tuesday that he was awake and responsive after undergoing a “long surgical procedure.”
Another car crash involving Tiger Woods. Speeding is likely to be the cause. He is currently in surgery and in stable condition. We hope he has a speedy recovery.
Golfing great Tiger Woods was hurt in a rollover car crash in Southern California on Tuesday morning, the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department said.
The crash took place at about 7:12 a.m. on the border of Rolling Hills estates and Rancho Palos Verdes, the sheriff’s office said.
Woods, the driver and only occupant, was extricated through a windshield and taken to a hospital for his injuries, the sheriff’s office said.
The Los Angeles County Fire Department said he was transported in serious condition.
The PGA Tour said in a statement, “We are awaiting further information when he comes out of surgery. On behalf of the PGA Tour and our players, Tiger is in our prayers and will have our full support as he recovers.”
Fellow golfing legend Jack Nicklaus tweeted, “We are deeply concerned. We want to offer him our heartfelt support and prayers at this difficult time. Please join us in wishing Tiger a successful surgery and all the best for a full recovery.”
Woods is second all-time in major victories, with 15, behind only Nicklaus’ 18 wins. Gold medal-winning skier Lindsey Vonn, who previously dated Woods, tweeted, “Praying for TW right now.”
Woods hosted The Genesis Invitational in Los Angeles last week. He wasn’t playing as he’s been recovering from recent back surgery.