NEW YORK — One woman was killed and 22 others injured Thursday when a speeding vehicle struck pedestrians in Manhattan’s bustling Times Square, police and fire officials said.
The driver, who allegedly put up a fight and threw punches at officers, is in custody, the New York Police Department said. The driver has a history of drunken driving, a law enforcement official said.
The driver was identified as 26-year-old Richard Rojas. The incident is being investigated as an accident, a police official said.
“There is no indication this was an act of terrorism,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said.
Before striking pedestrians, the car was “out of control,” an emergency management official said. Witnesses on social media described a speeding car plowing into people before crashing.
Social media images show injured people on the street, a car upended at an angle and crowds gathered in the heart of the tourist hub.
Elizabeth Long of Ohio said she was walking to the Hard Rock Cafe when she saw a maroon car heading toward her on the sidewalk. She ran into a building and prayed, she said.
Patsy Sciutto, who works in Times Square, said she was meeting someone for lunch when an announcement came over a loudspeaker that the building was on lockdown because of an incident outside.
Officers there told her there was an “unknown speeding car,” Sciutto said.
Times Square averaged about 360,000 daily visitors in April, according to a tally by the Times Square Alliance, making it one of the most visited locations in the world.