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Commerce Secretary John Bryson accused in hit-and-run crashes

June 11, 2012 | 12:25 am

 

Authorities are investigating a series of traffic collisions in the San Gabriel Valley involving U.S. Secretary of Commerce John Bryson, authorities said Saturday.

Bryson was found unconscious in his vehicle and has been hospitalized, officials said.

Bryson was driving a Lexus in the 400 block of South San Gabriel Boulevard shortly after 5 p.m. Saturday, when he allegedly rear-ended a Buick as it was waiting for a train to pass, according to a statement released by the L.A. County Sheriff's Department and the San Gabriel Police Department.

After briefly stopping to talk to the three men inside the Buick, Bryson left the location in the Lexus and then struck the Buick a second time, authorities said. The men followed Bryson's car and called 911 to ask for police assistance.

Bryson continued to drive his Lexus into Rosemead, which is patrolled by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. There, he allegedly crashed into a second vehicle near the intersection of San Gabriel Boulevard and Hellman Avenue.

There authorities found him alone and unconscious behind the wheel of his car.

Bryson was treated at the scene by Los Angeles County firefighters. Authorities said drugs or alcohol do not appear to have played a role in the crash. They said Bryson was cooperative. He was cited for felony hit and run but was not booked into jail because he had been admitted to the hospital. His condition was not known.

Click for full mapAccording to his official biography, Bryson was chairman of Edison International, the parent company of Southern California Edison for 18 years until 2008.

"Throughout a distinguished career in which he's led nonprofits, government agencies and large companies, he's been a fierce proponent of alternative energy," President Obama said in announcing Bryson's nomination last year.

"As CEO, he created a competitive power subsidiary, the Mission Group, which expanded across the U.S. and was a global leader in the privatization of power plants and electric systems in Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, the Philippines and several European countries," according to the biography. "Bryson has also served as a director on several public, educational and nonprofit boards, including The Boeing Company and The Walt Disney Company.  He has also served as an adviser and a director of entrepreneurial and start-up companies including Coda Automotive, Inc. and BrightSource Energy. He was a senior adviser to the global investment firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts (KKR)."

Earlier in his career, Bryson was an environmental lawyer and co-founder of the Natural Resources Defense Council.

He could not immediately be reached for comment.

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--Andrew Blankstein

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