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Man Drives Wrong Way Onto Bridge, Leaps to His Death

June 09, 2000

A 37-year-old man driving the wrong way on the Vincent Thomas Bridge in San Pedro on Thursday night forced a California Highway Patrol officer from his motorcycle and collided with another vehicle before leaving his pickup truck and jumping to his death in the water.

Firefighters had to use machinery to extricate a 41-year-old woman from her car after the pickup truck hit it at about 8 p.m., Los Angeles police Officer Jason Lee said. She was in serious condition at St. Mary Medical Center.

The CHP officer, who jumped from his motorcycle when he saw the pickup truck approaching him, was not injured, Lee said. The wrong-way driver, heading westbound in the eastbound lanes, hit the officer's motorcycle.

The South Gate man then jumped from the bridge into the channel. Fire Department divers recovered his body, Lee said.

CHP Officer Rosa Ray said the man is believed to have been involved in a hit-and-run accident on the Harbor Freeway about 10 minutes earlier.

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