A mystery man who lives near Tiger Woods' car accident site was first at the scene and found the golf legend unconscious, authorities have revealed.
Woods was reported unconscious in a mangled SUV after he crashed the vehicle in Southern California last week, suffering a shattered ankle and two leg fractures, and has undergone several surgeries since the incident.
The LA Sheriff's Department is reportedly attempting to examine the black box recording of the vehicle, with the court documents part of its effort to obtain the data which would be able to show investigators the speed of the vehicle before the collision and whether its brakes were applied.
But court documents revealed that an unnamed witness was first on the scene and found Woods unconscious, trying to speak to the golfing great but getting no response.
By the time officers arrived though, Woods was conscious and was able to answer basic questions.
Woods told deputies — at the wreckage and later at the hospital — he did not know how the crash occurred and didn't remember driving, according to the affidavit.
The document was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court as part of a statement of probable cause requesting that a search warrant be approved for the 2021 Genesis GV80 SUV's black box.
A judge approved the search warrant for the data recorder but sheriff's representatives have declined to say what they have found on it.
"LASD is not releasing any further information at this time," department spokesman Deputy Shawn Du Busky said in a statement yesterday. "The traffic collision investigation is ongoing and traffic investigators continue to work to determine the cause of the collision."
Deputies did not consult with the Los Angeles County District Attorney's office regarding any search warrants in the Woods investigation, according to DA spokesman Greg Risling.
Experts say police can ask prosecutors if there is enough probable cause to seek a warrant, noting that it would be typical to do so in motor vehicle cases when there aren't immediate signs of impairment but a detective believes there is reason to obtain a blood sample.
Risling declined further comment when asked whether LA prosecutors generally weigh in on such cases.
Woods is from the Los Angeles area and was back home to host his PGA tournament, the Genesis Invitational at Riviera Country Club, which ended two days before the crash.
He was driving an SUV loaned to him by the tournament when he struck a raised median, crossed through two oncoming lanes and uprooted a tree. The crash occurred on a downhill stretch that police said is known for wrecks.
Sheriff Alex Villanueva has said Woods was driving alone in good weather, there was no evidence of impairment, and the crash was "purely an accident." However, depending on what is found on the data recorder, Woods could face a misdemeanour driving charge or a traffic citation.
- With AP