Police: Driver Deliberately Drove Down Calif. Sidewalk, Mowing Down 8 People

america
April 24, 2019Apr 24, 2019

A horrifying story is coming out of the Silicon Valley city of Sunnyvale, California.

Police say that a man intentionally drove his Toyota Corolla through a crowded crosswalk and up onto a busy sidewalk Tuesday evening, mowing down eight people, including at least one minor, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

Sunnyvale is home to Google, LinkedIn, and Yahoo!, among other tech businesses and aerospace companies.

Eight people were injured, but incredibly, nobody was killed. Three people were in critical condition after the incident. The FBI is now investigating, including looking into the possibility that this was domestic terrorism.

The FBI is considering “all possibilities,” said police Capt. Jim Choi, according to CNN.

"Should it be determined that a federal crime was committed, we will become more involved,” an FBI spokesperson said.

Some witnesses said the driver was saying "Thank you, Jesus" over and over again, and while others said he evoked the name "Allah." Witnesses said he also laid face down on the grass after crashing his car into a tree, the Associated Press reported.

“Some of the statements [from witnesses] show that the driver did not try to avoid the pedestrians at the crosswalk, and there was no attempt to swerve, drive away or brake,” Choi said.

Authorities have arrested the male driver but haven’t released his identity. The car he was driving is registered to a 34-year-old local man, but its registration was revoked last week after being paid for with a bad check.

The intersection where the incident occurred, around 6:40 p.m. Pacific, is in a popular shopping district and is often busy with pedestrians.

The potential attack brought to mind two similar incidences in New York City in 2017.

In May, a 26-year-old Navy veteran suffering from drug and alcohol abuse drove his Honda Accord down a Times Square sidewalk after getting high on PCP, according to NBC News. He told a witness “I wanted to kill them” after he killed one pedestrian and injured 22 others before hitting a barricade.

Then in October, a 29-year-old Uzbeki immigrant was shot by a police officer after he drove down a bike path with a Home Depot truck, yelling “Allahu Akbar” as he killed eight people and injured 11, the New York Post reported. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio called it “an act of terror.”

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