Investigators request cell phone from reality star Bruce Jenner following fatal crash
Investigators are expected to ask the Olympic athlete and reality TV personality Bruce Jenner and others involved in a fatal California car crash to hand over their mobile phones, so they can try to find out if anyone was texting or making calls when the accident happened.
Police are also likely to request images taken by paparazzi photographers who were following Jenner and took photographs of the crash, which happened in Malibu on Saturday afternoon, and its aftermath.
Related: Olympian Bruce Jenner unhurt in car crash that kills one
A woman driving one of the vehicles was killed in the four-car crash, which occurred on a narrow, winding section of the scenic Pacific Coast Highway, north of Los Angeles. Jenner, 65, was not injured. Seven other people were reportedly taken to hospital.
“It’s a fairly standard procedure to ask people to hand over their cellphones in a situation like this, so you can imagine that is very likely to happen. We can get a search warrant if anyone declines to make their phone available to us,” sergeant Philip Brooks of the Los Angeles sheriff’s department told the Guardian.
Brooks said there was no indication Jenner was being harassed by the trailing photographers.
“When we spoke to Mr Jenner he indicated that he was being followed by paparazzi – that’s not unusual, this is LA, they do routinely follow you around,” he said. “In this case they were not chasing him and he was not trying to get away from them.”
Brooks said he did not know whether Jenner had been asked by investigators if he was using his phone when his SUV went into the back of the car driven by the woman who died.
Jenner was towing a small trailer with an all-terrain-vehicle (ATV) on it when he was in collision with the car in front, which had braked suddenly because another car in front of it stopped. The vehicle with which Jenner’s SUV made initial contact spun into the opposite lane; its driver was killed after her car was hit by oncoming traffic.
“There is evidence to suggest that he [Jenner] reacted by slamming on his brakes and trying to turn to his right slightly,” Brooks said.
Jenner and other people involved in the crash have been interviewed and are likely to be interviewed again, said Brooks. Police are currently conducting a fatal traffic inquiry and it has not yet become “anything further” such as a vehicular manslaughter case, he said.
“It will not be anything further unless there was some kind of code violation or someone is determined at fault, then it could turn into a more serious investigation,” said Brooks.
He said that using a cellphone while driving was a traffic code violation but added that it is “very difficult to prove that it occurred at the exact time” of a crash.
No-one had been arrested by Sunday afternoon and LA detectives were working on the case. Investigators were expected to seek out additional witnesses.
There was no official reaction from Jenner or his family. Jenner is well known in the sports world, having won decathlon Olympic gold in Montreal in 1976.
He is a also a familiar face to viewers of Keeping Up With the Kardashians – until a recent split he was married to Kris Jenner , who bore him two children and more famously is the mother of Kim, Kourtney, Khloe and Robert Kardashian.
Recent reports have said Jenner is undergoing gender transition. His mother appeared to confirm the news with an interview with the Associated Press, although she continued to use “he” while expressing pride in Jenner’s plans. Jenner has not commented on such reports.
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