35% Increase in Pedestrian Deaths in San Diego: Medical Examiner Report

An annual report released by the San Diego County Medical Examiner cites 88 accidental pedestrian deaths in San Diego in 2014

There has been 35 percent jump in the number of pedestrian deaths in San Diego over the past year, according to an annual report released Thursday by the San Diego County Medical Examiner.

The Medical Examiner’s “2014 Annual Report” breaks down deaths in San Diego County, particularly death cases investigated by the office. In 2014, a total of 2,972 cases were fully investigated by the ME, the report says.

The report states that motor vehicle-related deaths made up 291 cases in 2014, up 18 percent from the previous year. Of those cases, the ME report says 88 were accidental pedestrian deaths – up from 64 pedestrian deaths the previous year, or a 35 percent increase.

That total, according to the document, doesn’t include two pedestrian deaths considered homicides and three pedestrian suicides.

Chief Deputy Medical Examiner Dr. Jonathan Lucas said nearly half of the pedestrian deaths in 2014 who were tested were under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Many were killed running across freeways in the dark.

Other vehicle-related deaths in the report included 70 drivers, 57 motorcyclists, 34 vehicle passengers, 10 bicyclists and eight vehicle occupants.

The report says 1,390 cases out of the 2,972 investigated by the ME were determined to be accidental deaths, while natural deaths were declared in 1,022 of the cases.

A total of 420 cases were suicides – down slightly from 441 suicide deaths in 2013.

The report also says 99 cases were homicides, with 42 of those involving a firearm as the method of homicide. The report says 13 homicides were by stabbing and 24 were by blunt force trauma.

Meanwhile, illicit drugs, medications and alcohol were involved in 481 accidental death cases, the report states. Methamphetamine was the number one cause of drug-related deaths, with 169 cases. Alcohol resulted in 133 deaths, while heroin was the cause in 105 local cases.

To read the full report, click here.

San Diego County Medical Examiner
The San Diego County Medical Examiner facility in Kearny Mesa.
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