Mustang Drives on Golden Gate Bridge Sidewalk; CHP Arrests Suspected DUI Driver

CHP officer says the accident could have been "much, much worse"

The California Highway Patrol arrested a 22-year-old driver on suspicion of driving under the influence Tuesday morning after his blue Mustang drove onto a Golden Gate Bridge sidewalk, wedging itself into a narrow pedestrian walkway.

Daniel Micah Soto of San Francisco, who is an "Apple specialist,"  was taken into custody shortly after 5:15 a.m., after his car drove onto the pedestrian portion of the bridge normally reserved for bicyclists. CHP Officer Andrew Barclay said Soto suffered some injuries after his airbag deployed.

CHP officials say Soto hit the gas and drove through a security gate as he was making a right-hand turn from Conzelman Road into the parking lot by the Marin Headlands, and lodged his car into in between a chain link fence and the rail of the iconic bridge.

Golden Gate Bridge spokeswoman Priya David Clemens took a photo of the unusual sight, adding that this has never happened before.

"It's a good thing we like to solve puzzles," Clemens said. "Because the driver certainly gave us a challenge."

About 10:20 a.m., crews used a crane to get the Mustang "unwedged" from its spot, and lifted it over a railing before towing it away, she said.

A Facebook page for a Daniel Soto shows a photo of the same Mustang, with the same license plate. A LinkedIn resume lists him working as an Apple specialist. An Apple representative did not return a request for comment. But a co-worker at the Apple store at the Stonetown Galleria confirmed Soto worked there, but declined to say more.

On the Marin County Sheriff's booking log, Soto listed his occupation as "sales," and his bail was set at $2,651.

No booking photo of Soto was provided. Attempts to reach him on Tuesday were not immediately successful.

The Mustang got stuck on the west side sidewalk, which is usually closed to pedestrian traffic until 3:30 p.m. The other side is open in the mornings. Authorities said the accident had nothing to do with Tuesday's rains, though it did slow down an already sluggish commute.

Barclay said the entire situation was "definitely very dangerous," but he noted that since no one was seriously injured, it "could have been much, much worse."

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NBC Bay Area's Shawn Murphy contributed to this report.

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