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Local News in Brief : Crash Not Related to Suicide Leap, CHP Says

An accident that tied up traffic on the San Diego Freeway for nearly eight hours Wednesday was not related to an earlier incident in which a man jumped from the back of a pickup truck in a suicide attempt, the California Highway Patrol said Thursday.

The suicide attempt occurred about 2:05 p.m. on the northbound freeway near Burbank Boulevard, Los Angeles police said. About 15 minutes later, a chain-reaction accident involving 13 vehicles occurred near Valley Vista Boulevard, about 1 1/2 miles to the south.

Officials had thought that the second accident might have been prompted by slow traffic caused by the jumper, but on Thursday CHP Spokesman Tim Saxon said they were not related.

The man, identified by police as Scott Jacob Watson, 21, was at Northridge Hospital Medical Center and suffered severe head injuries, according to Dean Gilmour, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County coroner. He said hospital officials had sought and received the coroner’s permission to remove the man’s organs for transplant.

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Hospital officials declined to confirm or deny the report.


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