Dharmesh Patel's Wife Pleads To Drop Murder Charge Against Husband In California Cliff Crash - Vibes Of India

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Dharmesh Patel’s Wife Pleads To Drop Murder Charge Against Husband In California Cliff Crash

| Updated: May 4, 2024 11:43

The Indian-origin doctor Dharmesh Patel, accused of intentionally driving his Tesla off a cliff in California with his wife and children in the car last year has found support from his wife Neha Patel.

Sharing about the terrible crash in a Redwood City court in California, Neha Patel pleaded with prosecutors to drop the attempted murder charges against him.

Her emotional testimony in court highlighted the ongoing pain the family is enduring. She told the court that their young son was asking her, “When’s Daddy coming home?”

Dharmesh Patel, a radiologist at Providence Holy Cross Medical Center in Los Angeles, is facing attempted murder charges after allegedly driving his Tesla off a cliff with his family.

Neha Patel claimed her husband was suffering from a mental illness at the time of the crash.

“We need him in our lives and it has been over a year and a half since my children or I have seen or spoken to Dharmesh,” she said.

“We are not a family without him,” she added.

Neha Patel also shared in court how her children feel heartbroken on each birthday and holiday without their father.

“When is Daddy coming home? He’s taking so long and I miss him,” she recalled her now-5-year-old son telling her.

The incident occurred on January 2, 2023, on a dangerous stretch of Pacific Coast Highway known as Devil’s Slide.

Patel drove the Tesla, with his wife, 7-year-old daughter, and 4-year-old son on board, off a 250-foot cliff.

Miraculously, all four family members survived, though they sustained various injuries.

Dharmesh Patel is facing three counts of attempted murder for the crash.

He initially claimed that his Tesla Model Y malfunctioned, causing the accident.

However, witnesses reported seeing the car not slow down before going over the cliff, and a police report found no evidence of vehicle issues.

Neha Patel also contradicted her husband’s claims, stating in court that he had “never had an episode” like this in their 25 years of marriage.

She believes her husband’s actions stemmed from a mental health condition, treatable with proper care.

This aligns with the testimony of a psychologist who stated that Patel experienced psychosis before the crash.

The psychologist also reported that Patel had delusions about his children being kidnapped and molested, fuelled by anxieties surrounding the fentanyl crisis and the war in Ukraine.

Last year, Neha Patel told investigators that her husband was suicidal and intentionally drove off the road, but pleaded for authorities not to prosecute the father.

“He’s depressed. He’s a doctor. He said he was going to drive off the cliff. He purposefully drove off,” Neha told rescuers at the time.

Dharmesh Patel’s legal team is seeking to have him qualify for a two-year mental health diversion programme.

This programme, introduced in California in 2018, allows defendants with diagnosed mental disorders to receive treatment and have their charges dismissed upon completion.

Psychologist Mark Patterson testified that Patel is a “very motivated” candidate who would benefit from the programme.

Neha Patel echoed this sentiment, stating, “Now that we understand and know he has a treatable condition, things will be different.”

The court will decide whether to allow Patel into the diversion programme or proceed with a trial, which could result in a life sentence.

In 2018, California started a programme for defendants with mental disorders called pre-trial diversion.

If Patel were to receive care and complete the two-year programme, his criminal charges would be dismissed, and his arrest record destroyed, reported the New York Post.

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