Responding to a question posted online that asked if he still considered the incident to be “purely an accident,” Villanueva said, “It still remains an accident. You either have an accident, or you have a deliberate act. This was an accident.”
Woods suffered major injuries to his legs and underwent multiple surgical procedures at two Los Angeles-area medical facilities over a period of approximately three weeks before he returned last month to his residence in Florida. The crash occurred early in the morning on a winding, hilly stretch of road in a residential neighborhood near Los Angeles that is known for car wrecks. Woods’s vehicle, an SUV loaned to him by the PGA Tour event he had hosted days before, went over a median, crossed two oncoming lanes and uprooted a tree as it careened off the road.
Villanueva has said that his office did not seek a warrant to test Woods’s blood immediately after the crash because he did not show the kind of evidence of impairment that would have established probable cause. The sheriff’s office did obtain a search warrant to recover the “black box” from the SUV, and an affidavit for the warrant obtained earlier this month by USA Today stated that Woods repeatedly told officers he did not remember the circumstances of his crash.
Villanueva, who asserted last month that Woods will not face charges in the crash, said Wednesday that his office has “all the contents of the black box, we’ve got everything.”
“It’s completed, signed, sealed and delivered,” he added. “However, we can’t release it without the permission of the people involved in the collision.”
“A cause has been determined, the investigation has concluded,” Villanueva declared. He did not elaborate on the nature of the privacy issues he said required Woods’s permission.
Even while becoming one of the most famous athletes in the world, Woods, whose $20 million yacht is named “Privacy,” has strove to remain guarded about his life away from the course. At times, however, he has felt compelled to address personal issues that have burst into public view, including in 2010, when he issued an apology for having cheated on then-wife Elin Nordegren.
In his most recent update on his condition, Woods said in a mid-March statement posted to social media that he would be “recovering at home and working on getting stronger every day.”
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