Man mows down pedestrians in N.Y.

Kingston Whig-Standard - - WORLD NEWS - COLLEEN LONG

NEW YORK — A man who ap­peared in­tox­i­cated drove his car the wrong way up a Times Square street Thurs­day and plowed into pedestrians on the side­walk, killing one and in­jur­ing about 20 oth­ers, au­thor­i­ties and wit­nesses said. The driver was taken into cus­tody and was be­ing tested for al­co­hol.

Pan­de­mo­nium erupted when the ve­hi­cle bar­relled through the tourist lo­ca­tion and came to rest with two of its wheels in the air. The car leaned on a lamp­post and steel bar­ri­ers in­tended to block ve­hi­cles from get­ting onto the side­walk.

“He’s just mow­ing down peo­ple,” said Asa Lowe, of Brook­lyn, who was stand­ing out­side a store when he heard scream­ing. “He didn’t stop. He just kept go­ing,” he said.

The crash hap­pened at mid­day on a hot, clear day that brought large crowds of peo­ple into the streets to en­joy the good weather.

Af­ter the car struck a bar­ri­cade and stopped, the driver climbed out of his ve­hi­cle, Lowe said.

“He just started run­ning un­til peo­ple tack­led him down,” Lowe said. “Cit­i­zens just re­acted.”

The 26-year-old driver from the Bronx was taken into cus­tody and was un­der­go­ing tests for al­co­hol, a law en­force­ment of­fi­cial said. The man has a his­tory of driv­ing while in­tox­i­cated, ac­cord­ing to the law en­force­ment of­fi­cial, who spoke on con­di­tion of anonymity be­cause the in­ves­ti­ga­tion was on­go­ing.

The crash killed one per­son and in­jured 19 oth­ers, the Fire De­part­ment of New York con­firmed. Po­lice do not sus­pect a link to ter­ror­ism, but the bomb squad re­sponded as a pre­cau­tion.

Tourists Pa­trick and Kelly Graves of She­boy­gan, Wis., were wait­ing to get on a tour bus when they heard the crash. Kelly Graves said she feared the worst, maybe a bomb, as “chaos” erupted and peo­ple be­gan run­ning.

Peo­ple rushed to help the in­jured, who were ly­ing on the side­walk.

Demo­cratic Gov. An­drew Cuomo, along with po­lice and city of­fi­cials, were at the scene of the crash.

The side­walks in many parts of Times Square and sur­round­ing blocks are lined with metal posts de­signed to pre­vent cars from get­ting onto the side­walks and other pub­lic ar­eas. That net­work of bar­ri­cades, though, is far from a com­plete de­fence. There are many ar­eas where ve­hi­cles could be driven onto packed side­walks or pub­lic plazas.

DREW ANGERER/GETTY IM­AGES

A wrecked car is seen in New York’s Times Square on Thurs­day af­ter a man drove onto the side­walk, killing one per­son and in­jur­ing 20 oth­ers.

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