NEW YORK (WTNH) — One person has died, and 22 people have been hurt after a motorist struck pedestrians in the densely populated Times Square section of New York City early Thursday afternoon.
Just after 12:10 p.m., News 8’s sister station WABC-TV tweeted out that a car had crashed at the intersection of West 44th Street and 7th Avenue, striking multiple pedestrians. One person was pronounced dead at the scene.
— Candace McCowan (@CandaceMcCowan7) May 18, 2017
The conditions of the injured people are unknown. The car crashed into a utility pole, and appeared to catch fire.
Police have closed Broadway from West 42nd Street to West 49th Street.
— ABC News (@ABC) May 18, 2017
At 12:40 p.m., law enforcement officials told ABC News that the driver is in custody. The driver, 26-year-old Richard Rojas, of the Bronx, attempted to flee from the scene. Rojas also has two prior DWIs, according to police. Witnesses said a car appeared to go the wrong way up Broadway and plowed into a group of people.
What’s happening in Times Square?? This car was in the sidewalk and people are on the streets pic.twitter.com/PsepRtfrAr
— gb (@gb__) May 18, 2017
NYPD released a brief statement just before 1:00 p.m.
It is believed to be an isolated incident, it remains under investigation.”
Just after 1:30 p.m., New York Mayor Bill DeBlasio confirmed at least 22 people have been hurt, in addition to the one death.
Sources tell News 8’s sister station WABC-TV that Rojas made a wrong turn north onto 7th Avenue, and then proceeded to drive the wrong way for three blocks. He struck multiple pedestrians before ultimately crashing at West 45th Street.
FDNY — confirms 19 injuries, 1 fatality in Time Square accident
Four of the 19 are serious. The rest are non life threatening. pic.twitter.com/OYic0kpxxZ
— Sandra Bookman (@SandraBookman7) May 18, 2017
This story is still developing. News 8 will post additional information to this story as soon as new details become available.