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Car mows down 22+ CA police recruits while running, 5 critical

Ambulance (Dreamstime/TNS)
November 16, 2022

A car ran into a group of California law enforcement recruits on Wednesday morning as they were on a morning run. Up to 21 people in the group were hit and seven victims were reportedly in critical condition.

The California Highway Patrol told ABC7 News that a group of Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department recruits was hit at 6:29a.m. PST near the intersection of Mills Avenue and Trumball Street. The intersection is located about a mile and half from the Sheriff’s Training Academy and Regional Services (STARS) Center in South Whittier, California.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said the driver of the vehicle has been detained.

Chad Sourbeer, a battalion chief with the Los Angeles County Fire Department initially told ABC7 that seven recruits are currently in critical condition, four are being treated for “immediate” injuries and 10 have minor injuries.

The Los Angeles County Fire Department later said there were 23 patients, including five in critical condition, four in moderate condition and 14 in a minor injury condition.

ABC7 reported the driver of the vehicle was among those injured. The outlet reported the driver was a 22-year-old who had driven the wrong way down the street. The driver also ran into a light pole.

During a press conference, Los Angeles Sheriff Alex Villanueva said the suspect showed no indications of intoxication during a field sobriety test.

Villanueva described some of the injuries recruits sustained as “life altering” and include severe head injuries and “loss of limb.”

“So far, it looks like it’s an accident, a horrific accident,” Villanueva said. “But we can’t know that for sure until the [California Highway Patrol] does their investigation and reaches a conclusion on all the evidence they still have yet to gather.”

Moments later, Villanueva said some recruits reported hearing the suspect vehicle accelerating. He also said the suspect vehicle left no skid marks on the road.

Newsmax shared footage from the intersection showing debris strewn across the street and numerous emergency vehicles in the area.

This was a breaking news story. The details were periodically updated as more information became available.