An elderly man was pronounced dead today after a potentially hastily parked car rolled down a hill and into his assisted living home Tuesday afternoon in La Mesa.
According to local police, the accident took place in the 4900 block of Mills Street at about 3:290 p.m. where a 2001 Audi S4 owned by Diego Wright rolled more than 260 feet from a steep parking lot across the street from the elderly man’s home.
Wright explained to authorities that he had properly parked his car at the top of the steep parking lot before making his way to his apartment, and the vehicle made its way through the home of its unsuspecting victim.
“I parked my car,” said Wright, “I went inside and heard a pretty loud noise, a crash, windows breaking… didn’t know what it was so I went inside my apartment.”
A short time later, he heard a knock at his door, where his apartment manager explained to him that his vehicle had rolled down the hill. He recalled that the parking brake was engaged and was in gear when he exited the vehicle. “Checked the brake… the brake was on” said Wright, “It was in gear so I don’t know exactly what happened.”
The elderly man, identified by the San Diego Medical Examiner as 89 year old Henry Hashiguchi, was reportedly sitting in a chair right next to the wall that was smashed by the car.
He was thrown to the ground, and sustained injuries to his left side. He was taken to nearby Sharp Memorial Hospital for treatment, but was later pronounced dead.
Police are investigating the crash to determine what caused the vehicle to lose its grip and roll away. There is no word on whether any criminal charges will be filed, as the car appeared to be properly parked.
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