MALIBU (CBSLA.com) — Olympic gold medalist and reality TV star Bruce Jenner issued a comment the day after getting into a chain-reaction crash in Malibu that killed a 69-year-old woman and injured six others.
Jenner said he’s praying for the family of Kim Howe and would continue to cooperate fully with the crash investigation, in a statement released by his publicist Alan Nierob: “My heartfelt and deepest sympathies go out to the family and loves ones, and to all of those who were involved or injured in this terrible accident.”
“It’s a devastating tragedy and I cannot pretend to imagine what this family is going through at this time. I am praying for them. I will continue to cooperate in every way possible.”
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said Howe was killed Saturday when her car was pushed into oncoming traffic during the four-car crash on PCH, in front of a Latigo Beach campground.
The sheriff’s office confirmed the woman’s identity at midday Sunday after tabloids, quoting neighbors, had published her name. Family notifications were still taking place, according to the coroner’s office, which did not provide more than her age.
Jim Pascucci told CBS2/KCAL9’s Erica Nochlin that he knows both Howe and Jenner.
He said in 2003 he sold Howe a house in the same gated community of Calabasas that Khloe Kardashian – the once step-daughter of Bruce Jenner – calls home.
Pascucci said of Howe: “It was a huge shock, you know. Here today, gone tomorrow. She was very vivacious. She had a very active social life, she was busy all the time.”
“I also know Bruce. He also goes to the same church I go to,” he said. “I know that Bruce is feeling really bad.”
Five children and one adult were injured in the crash, authorities said.
Jenner’s Cadillac Escalade rear-ended a Lexus, driven by Howe, who had just struck another car that slowed down or stopped in front of hers several hundred feet short of the traffic signal at Corral Canyon Road for unknown reasons, authorities said. When the Lexus was pushed into oncoming traffic, it was struck head-on by a Hummer H2.
Deputies confirm Jenner has been cooperating with their investigation. He voluntarily took a field sobriety test and offered to give a blood sample.
Officials are still trying to determine what caused the crash. They’re requesting the cellphone records of all the drivers involved to see if anyone was texting or talking at the time.
Jenner’s publicist says he was not texting while driving.
TMZ reports Jenner appears to have been holding a cigarette with his left hand just before the collision.
Deputies say the “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” mainstay was being followed by paparazzi but say they did not play a factor in the crash, and neither they nor Jenner were speeding.
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