California authorities need help identifying man who can’t remember who he is, where he’s from

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — The California Highway Patrol and doctors are hoping members of the public can help them identify a patient who can’t remember his name, whether he has any family or where he is from.

Officials said the man was hit by a car while riding a bicycle in Sacramento. According to UC Davis Medical Center, the man has been in their care for over two weeks.

Hospital staff and CHP officers have been unable to confirm the man’s identity.

“We are just trying to see if anybody knows him. Any information just to get him identified,” said Officer A.J. McTaggart. 

The man speaks Spanish, is about 50 years old, 5 feet 11 inches tall and 167 pounds. CHP said fingerprints and other records have not helped them find an identity. 

The California Highway Patrol and doctors at UC Davis Medical Center are hoping members of the public can help them identify a patient who can’t remember his name, whether he has any family or where he is from. (Photo courtesy: California Highway Patrol)

“Fugue state, which is what this person appears to be suffering from, is very rare,” said Dr. Charan Ranganath, with the Center for Neuroscience at UC Davis. 

Ranganath said he didn’t know the particulars of the man in the hospital, but said historical data suggests a link between not remembering who you are with some type of pre-existing mental stress. 

“If you experience stress, whether it’s physical or whether it’s mental, it still affects your brain, and the chemicals that are released under severe stress can actually have a really bad effect on areas of the brain that are important for memory and our sense of self, who we are,” Ranganath said. 

A similar incident happened recently in Davis, Calif., when a woman was found wandering in someone’s backyard with no idea who she was. Eventually, someone recognized her

Anyone who recognizes the man is asked to contact CHP Officer Eulogio Ceja at 916-754-7922 or Officer A.J. McTaggart at 916-798-0975. They can also be reached by email at eceja@chp.ca.gov or amctaggart@chp.ca.gov.

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