There are at least 8 people dead after a man drove a rented pickup truck into a crowd of bicyclists in Lower Manhattan Tuesday afternoon. According to law enforcement, after the driver plowed through the bike path, he exited the truck shouting “Allahu Akbar.”
In addition to the 8 fatalities, another 11 people were seriously injured. The 29-year-old driver was shot by police and taken into custody. The suspect is currently hospitalized.
Mayor Bill de Blasio spoke during a press conference Tuesday evening, saying the incident was “an act of terror.”
“This was an act of terror, and a particularly cowardly act of terror aimed at innocent civilians,” de Blasio said.
Cities around the world have been on high alert following multiple vehicle attacks over the past few months. This has been the preferred means of attack for the Islamic State, with cities in Germany, France, England, and now the United States, being targeted.
Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke said in a statement that “DHS and its law enforcement partners remain vigilant and committed to safeguarding the American people.”
President Trump responded to the attack via Twitter. He said, “In NYC, looks like another attack by a very sick and deranged person. Law enforcement is following this closely. NOT IN THE U.S.A.!”
In NYC, looks like another attack by a very sick and deranged person. Law enforcement is following this closely. NOT IN THE U.S.A.!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 31, 2017
Authorities said the driver began his attack at the West Street entrance of the bike path, just a few blocks away from the site of the New World Trade Center, and barreled into several people. Witnesses say the truck reached speeds of 40 to 50 miles per hour. The driver then jumped out of the truck carrying what appeared to be a pellet gun and paintball gun.
The truck also slammed into a school bus, injuring two adults and two children.
A witness, who was driving on the West Side Highway, said he saw several people bleeding in the street.