Police release cause of Tiger Woods's wreck: excessive speed

Jay Busbee

AUGUSTA, Ga. — On the eve of the Masters, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department has released the cause of the February wreck where Tiger Woods suffered extensive injury: excessive speed. 

Early in the morning of Feb. 24, Woods was driving in the Rancho Palos Verdes area of Los Angeles, en route to a golf course where he was filming a new show, when his SUV left the road and flipped several times before coming to rest on its side. In a news conference Wednesday, law enforcement said Woods was driving around 84-87 mph in a 45-mph zone.

Woods was taken to a nearby hospital with severe injuries to his right leg; he returned home to Florida several weeks later. (Here's a complete update of all that's known about Woods' condition since the wreck.)

Woods apparently lost control of the vehicle upon entering a sharp turn. Woods has little to no memory of the accident, and suffered several blows to the head during the wreck. Deputies on the scene said there was no evidence of Woods being under the influence of drugs or alcohol. 

The L.A. County Sheriff's Department did not seek a search warrant for Woods' blood samples or cell phone records, saying there was no probable cause for a criminal investigation. The department did obtain a search warrant for the data recorder of the 2021 Genesis GV80 SUV. However, the department did not forward any criminal charges to the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office. 

The sheriff's department had determined the cause of the wreck last week, but held off on releasing it publicly until consulting with Woods' team, a move that drew charges of special treatment. 

"We have reached out to Tiger Woods and his personnel," Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said last week. "There's some privacy issues on releasing information on the investigation, so we're going to ask them if they waive the privacy, and then we will be able to do a full release on all the information regarding the accident."

Woods has not been seen publicly since the accident, but has been in regular communication with several of his fellow players, and has tweeted out occasional updates and messages to his fans. "I’ll miss running up @DJohnsonPGA’s bill at the Champions Dinner tonight," Woods tweeted on Tuesday. "It’s still one of my favorite nights of the year."

The full extent of Woods' injuries, to say nothing of his return to the golf course, remains unknown. 

The ruins of Tiger Woods' SUV leave the scene in February. (Carolyn Cole/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
The ruins of Tiger Woods' SUV leave the scene in February. (Carolyn Cole/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)


Jay Busbee is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Follow him on Twitter at @jaybusbee or contact him at jay.busbee@yahoo.com.

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