Late Monday morning, the driver of a U-Haul struck and injured multiple pedestrians in Brooklyn, New York. We reported on the incident previously. At that point, there were four confirmed victims and the driver had been apprehended.
Police now advise that at least eight pedestrians were injured, with two having been transported to the hospital in critical condition.
Additionally, the driver has been identified as a 62-year-old homeless man.
BAY RIDGE, Brooklyn (WABC) — Multiple people were struck and injured by a U-Haul truck in Brooklyn right before the driver told police he wanted to die.
The suspect is a 62-year-old homeless man and may have been living in the U-Haul truck, according to police.
When they attempted to pull him over he said “shoot me, I’m not stopping” and that he “wanted to die.”
That’s when he fled the scene and drove onto the sidewalk.
ABC7 shared video of the truck jumping the curb and racing down the sidewalk, as a male pedestrian on the sidewalk leaps out of the way to avoid being struck:
If you watch closely, at the beginning of the video, a motorcyclist appears to lay down his bike in an attempt to avoid the truck. (Editor’s Note: That, or his rear tire is struck by the truck, as pointed out by an astute reader.)
The Bomb Squad inspected the truck and found nothing suspicious in the truck.
As for motive, as noted in our prior coverage, the incident does coincide with the start of the death penalty phase in the trial of a man who killed several in 2017 driving a vehicle through a crowd in Manhattan:
“It’s the first thing I thought,” Boyce said. “I worked the Sayfull Saipov case I remember how dangerous it was and what he did and how deadly it was. That was the first thing that came to mind when I heard about the rented truck. So let’s hope it’s not that and it’s a person in mental distress at this point and it’s nothing more than that. It’s difficult to link the two right now but how can you not think about that?”