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California Doctor Accused of Attempted Murder Avoids Trial, Granted Mental Health Diversion Instead

Doctor receiving mental health.

California Doctor Charged with Attempted Murder Avoids Trial

San Mateo County, California

A California doctor who was charged with three counts of attempted murder after he intentionally drove his Tesla off a cliff, with his wife and two young children inside, will not face trial. Instead, he has been granted a mental health diversion, as per court records.

Details of the Incident

In January 2023, 42-year-old Dharmesh Patel was driving along the Pacific Coast Highway when he plunged his vehicle off a San Mateo County cliff. His wife and children, aged 4 and 7 at the time, were in the car and were able to survive the impact. Patel would later be arrested and charged with three counts of attempted murder.

The Ruling

Despite the severity of the charges, San Mateo County Superior Court Judge Susan Jakubowski granted Patel a mental health diversion last week. The judge ruled that Patel’s depressive disorder made him eligible for the program, thus avoiding jail time.

Patel’s lawyers had requested this mental health diversion, stating that the doctor should undergo a two-year mental health outpatient treatment program instead of standing trial.

Doctor’s Statement and His Future

Patel’s doctors, who diagnosed him with schizoaffective disorder and major depressive disorder, recommended that Patel should be held in county jail for several weeks as a “bridging period” before being released.

Once released, the district attorney’s office stated that Patel would be required to live at his parent’s residence in Belmont, California. He will only be allowed to leave the residence for his treatment program or to report to court. In addition, he must surrender his driver’s license and passport and will be required to wear a GPS monitor.

Responses and Aftermath

The incident and its conclusions have drawn varied responses. Many were shocked and appalled at the initial incident. The circumstances of the crash led authorities to believe that this had been an “intentional act”. Patel’s wife, however, and other family members have shown unwavering support for him throughout the legal proceedings. Patel’s wife testified that she did not want her husband prosecuted and was more concerned with his release from jail and wellbeing.

Despite the controversy, the matter seems to be resolved legally, for now, as authorities continue to monitor Patel and ensure the safety of his family and the public. However, the story underscores the importance of mental health considerations within legal proceedings and the broader community.

California Doctor Accused of Attempted Murder Avoids Trial, Granted Mental Health Diversion Instead Spartanburg SC

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