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January 26, 2022

Woman falls to death from cliff following Highway 1 crash

NORTH COAST—The 40-year-old Santa Cruz woman who fell to her death following a mysterious two-car crash Monday on the North Coast of Santa Cruz County has been identified as Wendy Edwards, according to Ashley Keehn of the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office. Investigators have ruled the cause of death as drowning by suicide.

California Highway Patrol officer Sam Courtney said the 9am crash occurred on northbound Highway 1 south of upper Swanton Road. The preliminary investigation indicates that a 50-year-old Santa Cruz man was traveling north in a 2004 Toyota Tundra on Highway 1 when it was struck from the rear by a 2009 Honda Accord driven by Edwards.

After the collision, both vehicles pulled to the shoulder of the highway, Courtney said. Edwards reportedly exited her car, crossed the highway, and walked to the steep cliff overlooking the ocean where she jumped over the edge.

Her body was later recovered from the sea by a Coast Guard helicopter.

Courtney said alcohol and/or drugs have not been ruled out.

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