Brooklyn U-Haul truck hits multiple people in ‘roughing violence’, police say

At least eight people were hit by a U-Haul truck during a “violent stampede” in a Brooklyn neighborhood on Monday morning, New York Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell said. Two people suffered serious injuries, Sewell said.

The truck collided with pedestrians, cyclists and a police officer at seven different locations in the Bay Ridge neighborhood, Sewell told reporters at an afternoon news conference.

During the briefing, Sewell confirmed that the suspected driver was taken into custody near the entrance to the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel, which runs into lower Manhattan, after carrying out “a violent rampage in Brooklyn”. Police vehicles and ambulances were seen surrounding the truck which was parked on a sidewalk.

Investigators do not know whether the series of attacks was intentional, Sewell told reporters.

“At this time, we have no indication that there is any terrorist involvement in this incident,” the police commissioner said. “However, as always, we will continue to investigate this incident with the full capabilities of the NYPD.”

All eight identified victims were transported to area hospitals for treatment, Sewell said. Two were in critical condition, according to firefighters, while two others suffered serious injuries. The remaining four people suffered minor injuries, the police commissioner said.

Emergency responders rushed to the intersection of Bay Ridge Parkway and 5th Avenue, CBS New York reported, as the station broadcast live aerial footage from above the scene.

The U-Haul truck escaped a traffic stop near the intersection, the New York Police Department said in an earlier statement to CBS News.

At least one person hit by the U-Haul was a pedestrian, according to the NYPD, which characterized the other three injured as moped operators.

Authorities pursued the U-Haul truck after receiving reports of the vehicle hitting people, Sewell said. It was unclear whether the intersection of Bay Ridge Parkway and 5th Avenue was the last location where the truck hit pedestrians.

Police surround a U-Haul truck after several people were hit by the vehicle in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, on February 13, 2023.

CBS New York

The driver of the U-Haul attempted to flee the scene after the collision before police were able to close the vehicle several blocks away, CBS New York reported. He allegedly crashed into two police cars and temporarily escaped. Authorities confirmed that he was arrested shortly afterwards.

Police immediately closed off the area around the Bay Ridge intersection where the incident took place, and CBS New York reported that the NYPD bomb squad had arrived to examine the U-Haul as a precaution.

New York Governor Kathy Hochul acknowledged what she called a “developing situation” tweet posted just after 12:30

“I have been briefed on the development of the situation in Brooklyn,” Hochul wrote. “My team is coordinating with (the New York State Police) and (the NYPD) and stands ready to provide any assistance as the investigation continues.”

Fabien Levy, press secretary for New York Mayor Eric Adams, also confirmed that the mayor was informed of the incident and the ongoing police investigation.

“@NYCMayor has been informed and has been following developments regarding the UHaul truck that struck several pedestrians this morning in Brooklyn,” Levy wrote in a tweet. Noting that the police investigation is still ongoing, he added: “There are no additional credible threats at this time.”

Adams himself has yet to publicly address the collision.

Earlier, New York City Councilman Justin Brannan, whose district includes Bay Ridge, responded to the incident in a message shared on twitter.

“A man driving a U-Haul started a riot in Bay Ridge. He was just arrested in Sunset Park. Several people were hit and seriously injured. We have no idea why at this time, but it wasn’t an accident.” Brannan wrote. In a subsequent tweet, the councilor said the suspect “was actually arrested near the BK Battery Tunnel”, adding, “at least 6 people” are now suspected of having been hit by the U-Haul, with two “in very bad shape” . .”

This is a story in development. Come back for updates.

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