One person is dead and 22 others injured after a speeding car plowed into a crowd into New York City’s Times Square on Thursday, officials said. The New York City Police Department said the incident, which occurred around 12 p.m. local time, does not appear to be terror-related.
A witness told Yahoo News that after the car came to a halt on the sidewalk, the driver attempted to flee on foot before being apprehended. Video taken by a witness and posted to Instagram shortly after the crash showed police taking a person into custody. Initial news reports indicated the suspect, a 26-year-old man, had multiple DWI arrests on his record.
Jude Memeh, a resident of New Jersey, was in Times Square when the tragedy struck. Standing on the corner of 43rd Street and 7th Avenue, he told Yahoo News what he saw.
“I was on 45th Street in my car when I heard the sound of a car and commotion — everyone was running. I looked and I saw a Honda Accord, a red color. The Honda Accord flipped onto the sidewalk. When I looked, the guy from the Honda Accord started running,” he said. “While he was running, the police and people from the sidewalk started chasing him. When they finally had him, the police came out and the firefighters came out. There were a whole lot of bodies on the street. They started picking up the bodies and they started to see the sidewalks. When I came back to this point where I am right now, I saw the car catch on fire and it finally burnt down. The car caught on fire.”
Side Aslam, who has lived in New York for 25 years, sells hats with his business partner on a table at outside the Hard Rock Café on 43rd Street and 7th Avenue. He told Yahoo News they just started their workday when the car came speeding uptown.
“From downtown to uptown, from 42nd the car passed by fast like an 80 or 90 mile per hour speed car. Dark windows. A dark red car hitting people and passing to 47th street,” Aslam said.“I work here at 43rd street at this table. I saw it hitting people passing by. It’s not nice. It’s very sad what happened. I’ve worked 43rd for a long time.”
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