The District Attorney’s Office declined to charge a Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy who was typing on department computer when he fatally struck a prominent entertainment attorney on his bicycle in Calabasas.
A charge evaluation worksheet made public today said there was “insufficient evidence” to charge Deputy Andrew Wood with vehicular manslaughter.
“Wood briefly took his eyes away from the road precisely when the narrow roadway curved slightly to the left without prior warning, causing him to inadvertently travel straight into the bike lane, immediately striking” Milton Everett Olin Jr., who was riding eastbound in the bicycle lane on Mulholland Highway shortly after 1 p.m. Dec. 8, 2013, according to the charge evaluation worksheet.
“Wood entered the bicycle lane as a result of inattention caused by typing into his MDC (mobile digital computer),” according to the charge evaluation worksheet, which said Wood was responding to another deputy who asked if an investigation had been done at Calabasas High School.
“Since Wood was acting within the course and scope of his duties when he began to type his response … he acted lawfully,” according to the document.
The charge evaluation worksheet said evidence indicated Wood’s statement that he had sent his last text message while his patrol car was stopped at a red traffic light, while waiting to make a left turn on to Mulholland Highway, more than a minute before the collision was consistent with GPS and cell phone records, and that there was “no evidence that he was engaged in any other activities, such as using his personal cell phone, at the time of the collision.”
“Wood’s entry of ‘Yes I’ followed by ‘][\NOKKO’ is also consistent with him using the MDC, opposed to texting or calling on his personal cell phone,” according to the District Attorney’s Office.
Olin’s family sued the county July 16, alleging wrongful death and claiming the deputy was negligent. The lawsuit, which also names the Sheriff’s Department and Wood, seeks unspecified monetary damages.
Olin, 65, was a former chief operating officer for Napster.