Former Commerce Secretary Won't Be Charged in Hit-and-run

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Prosecutors declined Tuesday to file criminal charges against former U.S. Commerce Secretary John Bryson, saying he suffered a seizure that was responsible for a trio of traffic accidents.

Authorities have said Bryson's Lexus struck a car on June 9 that was stopped for a train near Los Angeles. He spoke briefly with the three occupants then hit the car again as he departed, police said. Bryson then rammed another vehicle a few minutes later. He was found unconscious in his vehicle.

Bryson, 68, was cited by police for felony hit-and run, but tests reveal he didn't have any alcohol or drugs in his system. Low amounts of Ambien were found in his bloodstream, but investigators couldn't determine if the sleep aid was a factor in the collisions.

"Both treating doctors agree that suspect was suffering from confusion following a seizure and crashed as a result," court documents say. "Based on doctors' opinions there is insufficient evidence to show knowing failure to provide personal information for hit-and-run."

Phone messages left for San Gabriel police and Bryson's wife, Louise, were not immediately returned.

San Gabriel police presented evidence Monday to county prosecutors, who decided against filing charges.

Bryson resigned as commerce secretary on June 21, saying then he had suffered a seizure and didn't want his health to be a distraction from his job. He is the former head of Edison International, the holding company that owns Southern California Edison, and has served on boards of major corporations, including Boeing Co. and Walt Disney Co.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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