L.A. County Sheriff Alex Villanueva also said that blood samples were not sought from Tiger Woods because of "absence of evidence of impairment"

By Jen Juneau
March 03, 2021 09:05 PM
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Tiger Woods
Tiger Woods
| Credit: Rob Carr/Getty

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department is set to examine data from the black box inside the vehicle Tiger Woods was driving before his accident last week.

Sheriff Alex Villanueva said in a Facebook Live session on Wednesday that investigators "did a search warrant to seize, in essence, the black box of" the golfer's Genesis SUV.

"They're gonna go through it and see if they can find out what was happening at the time of impact, and with that, they'll have more information they can attribute [to] the cause of the accident," he added.

Villanueva also said later in the video that blood samples was not sought from Woods, 45, because of "absence of evidence of impairment."

Sheriff's Deputy John Schloegl told USA Today Sports on Tuesday that the investigation was part of their regular protocol, saying, "We're trying to determine if a crime was committed."

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tiger woods
Scene of Tiger Woods' car crash
| Credit: splash news

"If somebody is involved in a traffic collision, we've got to reconstruct the traffic collision, if there was any reckless driving, if somebody was on their cell phone or something like that," he added. "We determine if there was a crime. If there was no crime, we close out the case, and it was a regular traffic collision."

Similar to Villanueva's comments, Schloegl also told USA Today that the department has "no probable cause" to obtain a warrant to get blood from the golfer, or from the hospital he was taken to for his injuries following the incident on Feb. 23.

Woods was involved in a single-vehicle accident in the suburb of Rancho Palos Verdes, California. His car was traveling downhill when it struck a sign in the center divider, sheared through a tree and landed in the brush alongside the road with "major damage," according to law enforcement officials.

The 11-time PGA Player of the Year was transported to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, where he underwent emergency surgery for "significant orthopedic injuries to his right lower extremity," Dr. Anish Mahajan, the Chief Medical Officer at the hospital, said in a statement. Woods was then transferred to Cedars-Sinai where he underwent "follow-up procedures," according to a statement shared on Woods' Twitter page on Friday.

Tiger Woods
Tiger Woods
| Credit: Jamie Squire/Getty

During a virtual press briefing on Feb. 24, Villanueva said the professional golfer will not face any criminal charges as the incident was "purely an accident."

"We don't contemplate any charges whatsoever," he explained. "This remains an accident. An accident is not a crime. They do happen, unfortunately."

RELATED VIDEO: Tiger Woods "Awake," "Responsive and Recovering" After Car Accident in California

Villanueva noted during the news conference that Woods did not show evidence of impairment when a deputy first arrived on the scene, so calling in a drug recognition expert was "not a concern at the time."

The sheriff also said that investigators will not pursue a misdemeanor charge against Woods, such as reckless driving. He noted an infraction could be possible if evidence arises to support that.