Former Commerce Secretary Will Not Be Charged in Car Accidents

Jul 3, 2012 7:11pm

Former Commerce Secretary John Bryson will not face criminal charges for his string of bizarre car accidents last month that ultimately led to his resignation following health concerns.

The Los Angeles District Attorney’s office declined to file a case today, noting that Bryson had suffered a seizure and did not have any traces of illegal drugs or alcohol in his system at the time of the crashes.

The then-secretary was found unconscious in his car June 9 following two back-to-back car accidents. He was originally cited for a felony hit-and-run.

“Both treating doctors agree that suspect was suffering from confusion following a seizure and crashed as a result,” according to the declination. “Based on doctors’ opinions there is insufficient evidence to show knowing failure to provide personal information for hit and run. Further, based on blood test and medical condition there is insufficient evidence to prove driving under the influence.”

Tests did show small amounts of the sleep-aid Ambien in Bryson’s system, but investigators could not determine whether it was a factor in the collisions.

Two days after the accidents, Bryson announced he was taking medical leave. He later stepped down as commerce secretary on June 21.

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