Was Bruce Jenner texting? Police to check phone records after fatal rear-end crash which killed 69-year-old Kardashian neighbour
By James Robertson and Emma Glanfield for MailOnline and Mia De Graaf For Dailymail.com Ten:13 BST eight Feb 2015, updated Ten:29 BST nine Feb two thousand fifteen
- Picture has emerged of Bruce Jenner smoking at the wheel before the crash, which many California legal practices treat as a significant factor in car accidents
- Special: Woman who died in Malibu crash involving Bruce Jenner named locally as 69-year-old Kim Howe
- Ms Howe reportedly lives in gated Los Angeles community and is neighbours with Kourtney and Khloe Kardashian
- She died following four-car crash on Pacific Coast Highway on Saturday, which also left seven other people injured
- It is believed Ms Howe – a widow – possesses several properties in California including one in Calabasas and in Malibu
- Jenner, 65, who is reportedly undergoing gender reassignment – is thought to have been uninjured in the crash
- Officials now examining phone records of all four drivers to help determine circumstances surrounding crash
Police are checking Bruce Jenner’s phone records amid claims he was texting at the wheel as his Cadillac Escalade ploughed into the back of another vehicle, leaving its driver dead.
Jenner, 65, was also pictured with a cigarette in his left mitt moments before the four-car pile-up on the Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu, Los Angeles, on Saturday.
So far, there is no evidence to support Jenner’s claim that he was being chased by paparazzi at the time of the crash.
The reality TV starlet and former Olympic competitor walked away unscathed from the collision, which left seven injured.
The identities of those involved in the horror crash have not yet been confirmed but MailOnline can exclusively expose that the woman who died is believed to be 69-year-old Kim Howe, a friend of the Kardashian-Jenner family.
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Ms Howe, a widow, has not yet been formally identified, but has been named locally.
She is believed to be neighbors with the Kardashians and lives in the same Calabasas hideaway as Kourtney, Robert and Khloe Kardashian, which is guarded by security at the road entrance.
Photographs showcase the moment her car was rear-ended by Jenner’s black Cadillac Escalade, which was towing a dune buggy at the time of the crash.
Investigators are now attempting to determine the cause and circumstances surrounding the crash and plan to look at the mobile phone records of all four drivers and check for any movie evidence, Sheriff Commander Michael Parker said.
Their investigations will determine if Jenner, or any of the other three drivers involved in the collision, were texting or on their mobile phones at the time of the collision.
They will also investigate whether Bruce Jenner was smoking.
Smoking while driving has been condemned by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, and numerous legal practices in California treat smoking as a significant factor in car accidents, tho’ it is not illegal.
He told CNN: ‘As of right now, there is no indication that Bruce Jenner was being chased by paparazzi at the time of the crash.
‘There was a possibility that paparazzi was following him at the time of the crash, but that is a very regular occurrence, and (there is) no indication at this time it was a contributing factor of the crash.’
Photographs displaying the crash influence show up to demonstrate Jenner, who is dressed in a blue jumper with dark sunglasses on, with his left arm raised while behind the wheel.
The L.A. County Sheriff’s Department will get a search warrant for both Jenner’s phone records and the cellphone itself,TMZ reported today. It is illegal to text while driving in California.
It is thought Jenner smashed his Cadillac Escalade into the back of the victim’s white Lexus, which was then shoved into the path of a Hummer, leaving the vehicle a crumpled wreck and the foot occupant dead.
Five children – and two adults – were also hospitalised in the fatal smash which occurred just after midday on Saturday.
The Olympic gold medalist and Kardashian family patriarch took a roadside sobriety test in front of officers in the wake of the horrific collision, which he passed, while his son Brody rushed to convenience him at the scene.
Today it emerged that the crash victim – believed to be Ms Howe – lives in the same gated community in Calabasas as Kourtney, Robert and Khloe Kardashian.
Jenner’s step-daughter Khloe bought her sprawling mansion on Prado Del Grandioso from pop singer Justin Bieber in March 2014.
The Keeping Up With The Kardashians starlet shares the six-bedroom, seven-bathroom 9,214 square foot property with her brother Rob, who has his own private wing away from the main house.
Widowed Ms Howe, whose Calabasas house on Prado De La Mariposa is valued at $Four,800,000, wields a number of properties including one in Malibu that faces onto the Pacific Ocean, however neighbours say the place has been left abandoned for three years because of a mold problem.
It is more than likely their paths would have crossed in the private estate where Khloe’s sister Kourtney also resides with her playmate Scott Disick and their three children Mason, Penelope and Reign.
It’s presently unknown what Ms Howe was doing in Malibu on Saturday when the tragic crash happened.
Sheriff’s officials say the deadly pile-up happened after a Prius came to a stop in the northbound lanes on the PCH, a notoriously busy road, for unknown reasons.
It is said the Prius was hit by a white Lexus, driven by Ms Howe, which was then rear-ended by Jenner’s Cadillac Escalade.
The influence of the crash coerced the Lexus into oncoming southbound traffic where it then collided head-on with a Hummer.
LA County Sheriff’s department officials confirmed that the crash took place at 12:12pm near the exit to the Corral Canyon park.
Two children and a baby traveling in the Hummer were taken to Santa Monica hospital as a precaution but did not show up to be injured.
Photos from the instantaneous aftermath proved to be a chilling look as a clearly shaken Jenner stands near wreckage of the crushed vehicle.
Jenner’s publicist confirmed that he hadn’t been hurt in the crash and he was pictured at the scene sitting in his vehicle and walking around on the road. He was later pictured being driven from the scene by sheriff’s deputies.
The highway was closed for almost nine hours following the midday accident. It was later the scene of another collision after a driver evidently overlooked the road closure gauze and drove through police barricades.
According to KTLA, the driver crashed through the barricades after hurtling passed a patrol car with flashing crimson lights and slammed into the two wrecked cars which were being examined for evidence at around 6.30pm.
There were no reports of any injuries and the driver was manacled after getting out of his car and arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence.
Jenner told cops he was being pursued by paparazzi in the moments leading to the original crash, however a sergeant disputed the claims.
Sergeant Philip Books said: ‘That wouldn’t make a entire lot of sense, but it’s always possible. We can’t confirm that.’
Jenner passed a field sobriety test and voluntarily went to a nearby hospital to provide a blood sample.
‘He is not under and investigation right now as far as driving while intoxicated,’ the sergeant added.
Investigators are now attempting to determine the cause and circumstances surrounding the crash and plan to look at the mobile phone records of all four drivers and check for any movie evidence, sheriff’s Cmdr. Michael Parker said.
Jenner has been living in a Malibu beach house since separating from Kris Jenner, mother to Kim, Kourtney, Khloe and Rob Kardashian, as well as Kylie and Kendall Jenner.
The shocking incident comes amid speculation surrounding Jenner’s much-discussed private life following reports from close friends and family confirming that he is transitioning into a woman.
An anonymous source told People magazine: ‘He is ultimately glad and his family is accepting of what he’s doing. He’s in such a good space. That’s why it’s the ideal time to do something like this.’
There is speculation that Jenner is preparing to give a tell-all interview discussing the process as well as plans to make a documentary as he prepares to go public.
Three-times married Jenner has been given the approval of his family including his 88-year-old mother Esther Jenner’s support.
She said: ‘I have never been more proud of Bruce for who he is, himself as a father, as an Olympian, a wonderful public speaker.’