CHP officer killed in Paso Robles

June 28, 2010

A California Highway Patrol officer was struck by a motorist at Spanish Camp and River Roads in Paso Robles around 6:30 p.m. on Sunday.

According to the CHP, a woman driving a Toyota Corolla turned a corner at high speed and lost control.

The officer, later identified as Brett Oswald, 47, had been investigating an abandoned vehicle at the time of the accident. He was waiting for a tow truck to arrive.

Oswald, a 21-year CHP veteran, suffered massive injuries and was transferred to Twin Cities Hospital in Templeton where he later died, according to San Luis Obispo County Sheriff Sgt. Dale Strobridge.

Oswald recently transferred to the area, Strobridge added.

This was second CHP officer hit by a car and killed on Sunday.

CHP Officer Justin McGrory, 28, was killed Sunday morning while conducting a traffic stop on I-15 south of Barstow. [Press-Enterprise]

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

There are some photo’s in the Tribune this morning. The facts behind this accident are also more clear. It appears that she did not approach the scene from behind or hit the officer from behind. She was in fact driving northbound and the two vehicles were along the side of the southbound lane. They would not have hindered her clearance in the least, regardless of whether she was or wasn’t aware that they were around the corner. The skid mark’s reveal that she crossed the yellow line in at least two places. She has to have been driving very fast and was unable to negotiate the curve. The speed limit is 55 in that area and people obviously drive it safely, how fast was she going? That curve isn’t even that severe (from the looks of the photo). When you combine this with the suspended license and a history of driving without a license, she deserves to get the book thrown at her IMO. I also don’t see how it’s possible that someone might have been hogging her lane to avoid the two parked vehicles because if that were true, then she would have drove up on the curb, not crossed the line into a direct head on collusion. This was such a needless loss of life, but for a careless, selfish driver. Rest in peace Officer Oswald, Sorry you had to leave so soon. Again, my condolences to all those who loved him.

No words can express our condolence to CHP Officer Oswald’s Family, Friends and his Department.

He shall always be our guardian on the highways…

This young woman has a long history with the police, she is know for a number of burglaries in Paso Robles and she was identified in a felony robbery of a downtown SLO clothing store. SLO PD had her name and picture within 24 hours and they did nothing to investigate her. After calling SLO PD and his Sergent multiple times, the officer then found the tapes of her at three locations had been erased. I hope the SLO PD Officer sleeps well. This lady should have been behind bars a long time ago.

My condolences to Officer Oswald and his wife. This could possible have been prevented.

Huummm, Looks like they are looking to throw the book at this young woman. I’ve been reading all the updates and I ran across a post at KSBY.

” passer by at Jun 28th 2010 2:35 PM ”

“I traveled on River Road last evening and saw the CHP officer just before the accident. What I observed was a small compact vehicle parked alongside the roadway, and the Officer in his car parked a few feet behind the car. I also noticed three cones behind the Officers car as I took a left hand turn around a corner in the road. I glanced back in my rear view mirror and thought how unsafe the situation was because both cars & cones were around a blind corner. Any car traveling along the road in the same direction as both cars would go around the corner and hit both cars because there wouldn’t be enough time to respond.”

To say “any car traveling along the road would go around the corner and hit both cars because there wouldn’t be enough time to stop” is a very strong statement.

Considering that the CHP was called out to remove the abandoned vehicle because the caller believed that as soon as it got dark, the car would be hit because It was around a blind corner. When I consider that another car ended up parked behind it on that blind corner I have to wonder if this just wasn’t a matter of poor judgment and a tragedy for two innocent people all the way around? Sometimes an accident is simply that.

Cindy-Kind of a bold statement when you actually do not know the details of the accident, like how fast the vehicle may have been going. I’m sure that since River Rd. is somewhat of a busy road that possibly several cars may have passed this abandoned vehicle without incident prior to the accident.

It’s been reported that the driver of the vehicle was also booked for an outstanding warrant related to a vehicle code violation. It was also reported that the driver was operating a vehicle with a suspended license. Looks like a very negilgent driver to me.

Hopefully at some time the judicial system will recognize these violator’s as assaulting all of us with a deadly weapon, a vehicle, everytime they get behind the wheel. Hopefully the time will fit the crime.

True we don’t know how fast she was driving but I know the speed limit there is 55MPH. A person who lives on that street just did a post explaining how very dangerous that part of the road is. She said several accidents have happened there. I suspect that this young woman is grieving terribly over having caused this officers loss of his life. It’s heartbreaking because he looks like a great big teddy bear. The driver who may also be part victim is a single mother with a small child and this is quite possibly a terrible tragedy that was caused by a number of errors. There were no road flares or cones to warn the on coming traffic and the road is very narrow. I think it’s best to wait for all the facts to come out before we start crucifying people. The fact that she had a suspended drivers license indicates that she must have had some serious traffic violations. I noticed that the police did not say that they didn’t believe alcohol or drugs were involved. Someone posted some excerpts from her face book over at KSBY. It wasn’t very pretty. There is definitely an indication that anything could come out of this investigation. I’ll be considering this a terrible accident until I read the investigative reports.

The news is reporting that this young lady has several prior driving offenses since 2008. She aparantly was driving at a high rate of speed accross the double yellow line on a blind curve before she struck the officers vehicle which was in the lane in order to block anyone who would strike it and him. All emergency vehicles do this as standard operating proceedure for safety…

They are saying she has 6 violations since 2008. As far as I can make out, she had a citation for running a stop sign that she didn’t pay and it turned into a warrant and that generated a suspended license. Then it appears that she got cited for driving on the suspended license and they took away her license completely. I don’t know what other violations might have been involved.

Are you saying that the officer parked his squad car in the road to block the lane so the abandoned car wouldn’t get hit and also to protect himself? I imagine he also needed to block the lane for the tow truck that he had dispatched. So she came around the corner and if the lane was blocked wouldn’t it make sense that she crossed the double line to avoid the blocked lane? I don’t think I’m clearly envisioning how this happened?

I believe it is SOP for emergency services to place their vehicles to act as a blocking device when on a roadway incident, I know fire engines are used in this way. The LEO probably had his vehicle with lights on, placed so that it would be clearly seen by on coming traffic and act as a barrier to protect himself and other emergency vehicles including a tow truck that would be involved.

Obviously the young lady did not see his vehicle in time to stop. The news reported she was traveling at a high rate of speed(usually above the posted speed limit or the safe speed for a given stretch of roadway) and she had crossed over the center of the roadway.

My condolences to Officer Oswald’s family and loved ones, this is a terrible tragedy.

This is too sad.

I’m sure the majority of our LE are doing a good job in a difficult environment. But some aren’t, not the least of which seem to be the chiefs of SLO, Atascadero and Paso (and of course the current sheriff). They, their departments and some of their employees need a severe spanking for lapses of good judgement and extra legal affairs.

Hotdog, I normally agree with most of what you post here, but to use this tragedy to promote the idea that we have bad law enforcement officers in our area is plain wrong. Please ask the moderator to remove your post or apologize; everyone anywhere can agree that the fact that CHP Officers are killed in the line of duty just because they are standing on the side of the road is the definition of “senseless killing”. I do hope that the state of California will come forth and take care of this officer’s family, and that nobody will begrudge the widow and any children of Brett Oswald.

Nobody would be asking for someone to remove a post if this was a civilian that had gotten killed and someone brought up the issue of civilians driving unsafely or not having their vehicle up to code. Thi is an unfortunate situation, indeed, but let us not turn it into the remembrance of a religious figure.

Actually Mkaney, we had recently asked to discontinue the discussion of the Santa Margarita woman who died hours before leaving the state out of respect for the survivors. Politicians and public figures are all fair game as they placed themselves in the spotlight. Not so of the victims of tragedy and a little class and dignity is clearly in order on these types of incidents.

There goes the argument that being a cop is SLO County doesn’t compare to working in LA. My heart goes out to the family of the officer and we pray for their comfort at this time of loss. These ladies and gentlemen working the streets to keep us safe have certainly earned my respect and deserve our support.