Arraignment set for dad accused of driving off cliff with toddler daughters

 

Last updated 6/22/2020 at 10:02am



SAN DIEGO (CNS) - A man accused of intentionally driving a pickup truck off Sunset Cliffs and into the ocean with his twin toddler daughters inside was slated to be arraigned on Sunday.

Robert Brians, 47, is charged with 13 counts, including attempted murder, kidnapping, child abuse, child abduction, criminal threats and burglary for allegedly driving into the water on the morning of June 13 with his 2-year-old daughters inside the truck. The girls were hospitalized in stable condition, according to a GoFundMe page created to raise money for their medical bills.

Brians, 47, is being held without bail pending his Monday afternoon arraignment via video conference at the San Diego Central Courthouse.

About 4:30 a.m. June 13, the toddlers' mother called 911 to report that Brians had taken their children without permission and allegedly contacted her via ``numerous calls and texts ... clearly stating she may not see (them) again,'' according to the GoFundMe.com page created Sunday.


He allegedly threatened to drive the vehicle off the Coronado Bay Bridge, but was later spotted by officers on Hill Street near Cornish Drive and sped off, careening over the side of a cliff and landing upside down in the water, according to police.

Moments later, a canine officer also responding to the emergency, 22-year SDPD veteran Jonathan Wiese, arrived in the area. Reaching the scene of the crash and seeing Brians' pickup upside down in the water, Wiese grabbed a long leash he uses for his service dog, wrapped it around his chest, gave the other end to fellow officers and rappelled down the precipice.

Wiese then swam out to the foundering truck and rescued the children and Brians. Medics took all three to hospitals for treatment of injuries that were not considered life-threatening.

 

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