The Glendale woman who drove her Mercedes up the Verdugo Wash at freeway speeds Thursday before getting trapped in the concrete-lined waterway will not face criminal charges because she broke no laws, officials said.
The 53-year-old woman, whom police declined to identify, apparently used a public works maintenance entrance to enter the channel after confusing it for a subterranean church parking lot, which she was visiting for the first time at Glenoaks Boulevard and Kenilworth Avenue, Glendale Police Sgt. Tom Lorenz said.
Officials initially thought she mistook the entrance for a freeway on-ramp.
“This is not a traffic accident, so it really is a very expensive mistake,” Lorenz said.
Upon entering the wash, she noticed a maintenance crew also driving there, so she decided to follow them briefly before passing them up, police said.
Reaching speeds of up to 70 mph, she eventually stopped about a mile later, after barreling down a stepped descent just short of an 8-foot drop-off into the L.A. River.