Josh Klinghoffer, former Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist, sued for wrongful death in pedestrian collision

August Brown, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Entertainment News

LOS ANGELES — Josh Klinghoffer, the former Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist, has been sued for wrongful death after a March incident where he allegedly ran over a pedestrian crossing the street in Alhambra.

The new lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court by Ashley Sanchez, the daughter of the pedestrian, Israel Sanchez, and obtained by The Times, alleges that on the afternoon of March 18, 44-year-old Klinghoffer was driving a black GMC Yukon at the corner of West Main Street and Meridian Avenue in Alhambra. Klinghoffer turned left at the intersection while 47-year-old Israel Sanchez was walking in the marked crosswalk.

"The pedestrian was thrown and/or dragged across the asphalt where he sustained blunt force trauma to the head, and lay on the pavement until medical transport arrived," the suit claims. He was pronounced dead at Huntington Hospital in Pasadena at 5:28 p.m.

"Video of the incident shows that defendant Josh Adam Klinghoffer made no braking or slowing motion until after he fatally struck Israel Sanchez, indicating that Defendant was likely driving while distracted," the suit continues. "This horrible outcome was forseeable and demonstrates a willful disregard for the rights and safety of others."

Klinghoffer's attorney, Andrew Brettler, said "it was a tragic accident."


"After Josh struck this pedestrian in the intersection, he immediately pulled over, stopped the car, called 911 and waited until police and the ambulance arrived," Brettler said in a statement to The Times. "Obviously, he's cooperating with the police throughout the traffic investigation. This was purely a tragic accident."

The suit did not list an amount for damages sought.

Klinghoffer performed and recorded with the Red Hot Chili Peppers from 2009 to 2019, and in 2012 was inducted with the band into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. After leaving the band, he's since toured and recorded with Pearl Jam and Iggy Pop.

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