Xavier Jarrell McClinton, 47, appeared in court Monday to be arraigned on one felony count each of attempted murder and domestic violence in connection with the bizarre attack, which took place on the bridge at around 2:25 p.m. Friday, San Mateo County District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said.
According to prosecutors, McClinton was driving east with his wife of eight years when the couple began to argue.
During the argument, McClinton drove his car off the side of the roadway in an apparent attempt to crash it into the Bay, Wagstaffe said.
When the car hit a barrier and came to a stop, McClinton grabbed his wife, pulled her out of the vehicle and tried to throw her off the bridge into the water, Wagstaffe said.
Several motorists who witnessed the incident got out of their vehicles and barely prevented the victim from falling by grabbing her legs, according to Wagstaffe.
McClinton fell about 15 feet from the bridge into the Bay and was arrested after the U.S. Coast Guard pulled him from the water.
His wife suffered a gash stretching from the side of her mouth to her cheek that required several stitches to close, Wagstaffe said.
It was not immediately clear how she was injured, he said.
According to investigators, McClinton had been showing signs of paranoia over two weeks prior to the attack on his wife. He had apparently said that people were trying to break into his home and kill him, Wagstaffe said.
The couple has three young children together, the district attorney said.
McClinton did not enter a plea at Monday's hearing, according to the district attorney's office.
He is scheduled to return to court on Friday and is being held without bail at San Mateo County Jail.