UPDATE: Off-Duty CHP Officer Dies in Collision Near San Martin
(BayAreaNewsTalk.com) – An off-duty California Highway Patrol officer died in unincorporated Santa Clara County near San Martin this morning, CHP officials said.
CHP Officer James Branik, a 44-year-old San Jose resident, died in a crash reported at 5:51 a.m. on Monterey Highway just south of Chester Avenue.
A 47-year-old Gilroy man driving a 2013 Chevrolet pickup truck was heading north on Monterey Highway and went from the left turn lane into the path of Branik, who was riding a 2005 Suzuki motorcycle south and hit the right side of the truck, according to the CHP.
Branik, who was assigned to the CHP’s Gilroy Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Facility in San Martin, was pronounced dead at the scene, CHP officials said.
Alcohol and drugs are not considered factors in the collision, which remains under investigation. The Chevy driver has not been arrested, according to the CHP.
Anyone with information about the case is encouraged to call CHP Officer Sean Nichol at the agency’s Hollister-Gilroy area office at (408) 848-2324.