Auto ploughs into pedestrians in New York's Time Square

Remigio Civitarese
Mag 19, 2017

A man who appeared intoxicated drove his auto the wrong way up a Times Square street and plowed into pedestrians on the sidewalk Thursday, killing a teenager and injuring 22 other people, authorities and witnesses said.

A man accused of steering his vehicle on to one of the busiest pavements in the United States and mowing down pedestrians has been charged with murder and attempted murder.

One surveillance video showed the maroon auto jump the curb and slam into a group of people, sending bodies tumbling over the hood of the speeding Honda Accord.

A driver plowed into a crowd in New York's Times Square midday Thursday, killing an 18-year-old woman and injuring 22 others, police said.

The driver has two prior arrests for driving while intoxicated as well as other motor vehicle violations, sources said.

She said: "It was chaos.there were people lying on the ground, including a Gray Line Bus ticket seller, who was injured, but then we were shooed away (by police)".

After his arrest, Rojas told officers he was "hearing voices" and expected to die, police officials said.

Of the injured, four were critical and three deemed very serious but were all likely to survive, authorities said.

Before striking pedestrians, the vehicle was "out of control", an emergency management official said.

In 2008 and 2015, he was arrested for drink-driving. A military judge sentenced him to three months confinement.

In the Times Square incident, Rojas was charged with one count of murder in the second degree, aggravated vehicular homicide and multiple counts of attempted murder, a NY police spokesperson said in an email late on Thursday. "I can show you through feelings but I can't say in words".

Before striking pedestrians, the 2009 Honda Accord was "out of control", an emergency management official said.

The driver of the vehicle, identified by police as Richard Rojas, 26, of the Bronx, was screaming and flailing as he got out of the auto after hitting multiple people, Bradix said.

Witness, Juan Soto, told Sky News: "I came upon the scene - a gruesome scene with multiple victims on the sidewalk and the street". She heard screaming. Fearing the auto would hit her, she ran to a nearby building's revolving door.

He said he saw injured people, including a woman who "had tracks all over her body".

"He's been going through a real tough time", he said.

"I'm shaken", said Long, who wasn't injured. "I looked back and she was in a pile on the street", Donahey said. A block from the scene people were talking about the crash, trying to piece together what happened. "He didn't stop", said Asa Lowe, of Brooklyn, who was standing outside a store when he heard screaming.

Consulate General of China in NY said in a statement that its officials had asked hospital authorities to provide injured pedestrians' information, adding that so far no Chinese nationals had been reportedly injured in the auto incident.

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