Richard Rojas has been identified as the driver behind the wheel in the deadly car accident at Times Square Thursday afternoon. He is reportedly a former member of the U.S. Navy. and a U.S. citizen.
CBS New York confirmed that at least 22 have been injured and one has died, reportedly an 18-year-old woman who was with her 13-year-old sister at the time. Three of the victims are in critical condition, the New York Post reports.
“A speeding vehicle struck pedestrians on a sidewalk in New York City’s Times Square on Thursday, according to an announcement at nearby Reuters news agency headquarters,” reported Reuters.
Nearby buildings were put on lockdown as a result of the crash. According to Fox News, “the vehicle was traveling against traffic and trying to enter a pedestrian section of Times Square.” The area was “heavily populated with tourists,” reports Fox. Authorities believe the cause was likely DWI, not terrorism.
Police took the 26-year-old Bronx man with two DWIs on his record into custody. The suspect reportedly attempted to flee the scene, according to ABC News. CBS reported that the driver was being tested for alcohol.
Sources told Newsday Rojas was going 90 mph in a 50 mph zone in one of his previous DWI arrests.
“We saw people laying on the sidewalk…with crowds of people laying around them. You could see clumps of people down the sidewalk with people all around them trying to help them.”
A witness told Reuters about seeing “one person was covered with a bloodstained blanket after the collision.” The car came to rest after crashing into a pole, reported Reuters. Photos showed it remained on the scene for some time.
A witness told Fox News what she saw at the scene. While being held by police, he is said to have punched an officer.
According to CNN, one person was killed in the incident, which occurred about a mile from Trump Tower, although the president was not there at the time. CNN reported that New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill DeBlasio headed to the scene. The victim has not yet been identified.
About Times Square
Times Square is visited by 360,000 people per day, which means over 131 million people pass through Times Square each year. Formerly known as Longacre Square, Times Square was renamed in 1904 after The New York Times moved its headquarters to the newly erected Times Building – now One Times Square – the site of the annual New Year’s Eve ball drop.
The famous site is visited by 360,000 people per day, which means over 131 million people pass through Times Square each year.
Formerly known as Longacre Square, Times Square was renamed in 1904 after The New York Times moved its headquarters to the newly erected Times Building – now One Times Square – the site of the annual New Year’s Eve ball drop. More than 460,000 pedestrians walk through Times Square on its busiest days.