Anne Heche Car Crash: Hero Neighbor Who Tried To Rescue Her Speaks Out

by Caitlin Berard

On Friday morning (August 5), a quiet Los Angeles neighborhood was enveloped in chaos when actress Anne Heche crashed her car into a home with the owner inside, setting both the house and her car ablaze. Though medical officials have stated that she’s expected to live, Heche remains in critical condition with severe burns.

According to witnesses, the car first crashed into the garage of an apartment complex in Mar Vista. Residents of the complex attempted to stop Anne Heche from further endangering herself and others there, but the actress refused. Instead of getting out of the car, she put it in reverse and sped off, allegedly reaching speeds of 90 MPH before crashing into a nearby home.

Following the crash, David Manpearl, another resident of the neighborhood, rushed to the scene to help. “At about 10:50 am I heard a car go speeding by. And [I] looked out my window where I saw the car going about 90 miles an hour,” he recalled in an interview with the Daily Mail. “Within seconds, I heard a loud crash, at which point I ran outside in my flip-flops because I knew someone was hurt. And boy was I right.”

His initial intention was to assist Anne Heche. However, when he saw the owner of the home into which she had crashed panicking about her endangered pets, Manpearl first ensured that everyone in the home was able to evacuate.

“Before I approached the car, I saw the resident of the home standing barefoot in the debris,” he explained. “She was in shock and frantically asked me to help get her pets out of the house. [I] escorted her out of the side of her house. She had her two dogs with her and a tortoise.”

Neighborhood Hero Describes Interaction With Anne Heche Following Life-Threatening Crash

After helping the victim of Anne Heche’s crash, David Manpearl attempted to help Heche herself. Unfortunately, however, he was unable to remove the actress from the vehicle before the situation became too dangerous for civilian assistance.

“I tried speaking with her a few times asking if she was ok,” he said. “But she wasn’t responding so I had to get closer. I was able to open the back door of the car and crawled halfway inside. This time when I asked her if she was ok, she said no.”

“I tried to talk to her again and noticed it was getting smokey,” Manpearl continued. “The flames were now on my right and my left so I quickly made my way out of the car.”

The flames engulfed the car so quickly, in fact, that Manpearl recalls feeling certain that Anne Heche was deceased. “I was positive that the driver was dead,” he said. “That she had burned up. It took at least 30 minutes for the fire department to douse the flames and pull her out.”

“I was surprised to find out that it was Anne Heche,” Manpearl recalled. “I think I knew she had had problems in the past.”