According to news reports, former Gizmondo executive Stefan Eriksson has been involved in a high-profile accident in Los Angeles which destroyed his $1 million Ferrari Enzo sports car, following a crash at more than 120 miles per hour during an alleged street race.
Eriksson, who resigned from Gizmondo
last October following controversy over Gizmondo's financial performance and significant financial perks to company directors, is claiming that he was merely a passenger in the vehicle.
The 2003 Ferrari Enzo was racing a Mercedes-Benz SLR when it crashed into a light pole on the Pacific Coast Highway, shearing the car in two. A 'German man called Dietrich', the supposed driver, according to Eriksson, allegedly fled the scene. A significant police search failed to find 'Dietrich', and no arrests have yet been made.
The Los Angeles Times reported Sheriff's Sgt. Philip Brooks as noting that Eriksson "...had a .09 blood-alcohol level, but if he's a passenger, that's OK. But he had a bloody lip, and only the air bag on the driver's side had blood on it. The passenger-side air bag did not. My Scooby-Doo detectives are looking closely into that." The Times notes that Sergeant Brooks then added: "Maybe the 'driver' had a friend who picked him up. Maybe he thumbed a ride. Maybe he was a ghost."
Gamasutra has previously reported
in detail on the notable perks enjoyed by Eriksson related to his Gizmondo position, including at least a base salary of $1,500,000 and lavish car allowances. The firm's Gizmondo Europe subsidiary has recently lapsed into liquidation, following the unsuccessful launch of its handheld.
The incident has caused a major stir on automobile-related websites, with car-related weblog Jalopnik posting a reader gallery of the crash aftermath
which make the massive extent of the crash clear.