Published: Sat, May 20, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

Motorist crashes into Times Square crowd, killing one person, injuring 22

Motorist crashes into Times Square crowd, killing one person, injuring 22

It was not immediately clear when Rojas would get a lawyer or be arraigned. He was taken from Midtown to the Seventh Precinct to undergo drug and alcohol testing. Eighteen-year-old Alyssa Elsman, of Portage, Michigan, was killed in the crash.

Friends said the sisters and their mother were visiting NY along with a friend.

Witnesses to the wreck in Times Square say they watched in horror as the vehicle plowed into a group of pedestrians, killing one and injuring 22 others. He waited for these cars to pass, and he accelerated."Results of drug tests on Rojas are expected in the next few days, Aubry said". Charges were dropped in the case.

A neighbourhood friend in the Bronx, Harrison Ramos, said Rojas was not the same when he came back from the Navy in 2014.

The officials weren't authorized to speak publicly and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.

Family friends say Rojas has been living on Walton Avenue in the Mount Eden section of the Bronx with his mother after serving in the armed forces.

A week ago he was arrested and charged with pointing a knife at a notary, who he accused of stealing his identity.

In addition to the murder charge, Rojas also faces 20 counts of attempted murder and five counts of aggravated vehicular homicide, according to a statement from the New York City Police Department. Law enforcement sources said police are obtaining a search warrant. The officials said Rojas told officers he had been hearing voices.

"I'm shaken", said Long, who wasn't injured. "This hurts, this makes me feel bad this news", neighbor Jose Medrano said. Another neighbor said Rojas is a "good person" and he doesn't know what happened to him.

The incident does not appear to be linked to terrorism and is being investigated as an accident, according to New York City police, who are working with the FBI to investigate. Sources say he blew a 0.0 when tested for alcohol at the precinct he was brought to for questioning. "The driver is in custody and we're still investigating".

Navy records show Rojas spent two months in a military prison in Charleston, South Carolina, in the summer of 2013 but do not specify why.

"I wasn't even all the way in when the auto sped by", perhaps 10 feet behind her, said Long, a 54-year-old who was in town to see a musical.

City officials do not consider the incident an act of terrorism, de Blasio said."It appears to be intentional in the sense that he was troubled and lashing out", the mayor said in an interview with radio station WNYC. Another 22 have been injured and taken to local hospitals.

Witnesses described a harrowing scene that started with screeching tires and ended with screams, chaos and a fiery crash at one of the world's most visited sites.

The vehicle flipped onto its side, smoke and flames spewing out of the hood as the injured littered the ground.

Police radio captured the urgency of the response.

Times Square, next to the famed Broadway theater district, is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the USA financial capital and where police stepped up patrols in recent years after a auto bomb was planted in 2010.

Social media images show injured people on the street, a vehicle upended at an angle and crowds gathered in the heart of the tourist hub.

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