Former CHP Officer Involved in Fatal Pedestrian Accident Should Not Have Been on Motorcycle Duty, Supervisor Testifies

In a recent deposition, California Highway Patrol (CHP) Lt. Joe Dominguez testified under oath that former CHP motorcycle officer Alfredo Gutierrez should not have been on motorcycle duty due to an undisclosed eye ailment. The testimony was revealed in court documents filed this week as part of a wrongful death lawsuit brought against the CHP by the family of Cezannie Mount, a pedestrian who was fatally struck by Gutierrez while he was riding to work in October 2019.

According to the filed documents, Lt. Dominguez stated that if Gutierrez had reported his eye ailment, he would have been removed from motorcycle duty until receiving medical clearance. The attorneys representing Mount’s family argued that there is no evidence to suggest that Gutierrez was examined or cleared by CHP-contracted doctors.

The attorneys further highlighted Dominguez’s testimony, emphasizing that the primary concern was ensuring the officer’s ability to safely operate the motorcycle without posing a risk to themselves or the public. They asserted that Gutierrez would not have been allowed on a CHP motorcycle at the time of the accident without the mandated clearance from a CHP doctor.

Medical records revealed that Gutierrez had been diagnosed with central serous chorioretinopathy, a condition that causes vision distortion due to fluid build-up beneath the retina, just five days before the accident. Surprisingly, this medical condition was not known to prosecutors or jurors during Gutierrez’s criminal trial in May, where he faced charges of vehicular manslaughter for Mount’s death. The trial ended in a hung jury.

Long Beach City Prosecutor Doug Haubert expressed his disappointment, stating that his office would have introduced Gutierrez’s eye condition as evidence of recklessness if they had been informed about it. Medical experts likened chorioretinopathy to viewing the world through smeared eyeglasses, causing blurry vision. The condition typically resolves itself within two to three months.

Cezannie Mount, a former basketball player at Long Beach Poly High School and an aspiring hip-hop artist, tragically lost his life while walking beside the median on Del Amo Boulevard near Cherry Avenue. Mount’s family described him as a talented musician who had recently returned home after earning a music degree from Earlham College in Indiana. He was working at a local restaurant to fund his music studio time.

Gutierrez, who served at the South Los Angeles CHP office, sustained severe injuries in the crash and subsequently retired on medical grounds.

The ongoing lawsuit and the revelation of Gutierrez’s undisclosed eye ailment have raised questions about the CHP’s handling of the situation. The family’s attorneys argue that either the CHP was aware of Gutierrez’s condition and neglected to take appropriate action, or Gutierrez failed to disclose his ailment to his supervisors.

CrimeDoor
Author: CrimeDoor

1 Response

  1. “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

    This quote resonates with the post because it highlights the importance of addressing and fighting against any form of injustice, regardless of where it occurs. The post discusses a deposition involving the California Highway Patrol, which suggests that there may be some form of injustice or wrongdoing involved. Martin Luther King Jr.’s quote reminds us that injustice should not be tolerated in any situation, as it poses a threat to justice as a whole. It

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