Eight people were killed and 11 others were seriously injured when Sayfullo Habibullaevic Saipov, 29, a native of Uzbekistan, allegedly drove onto a bike path near the West Side Highway on Tuesday afternoon. He plowed into a crowd of bicyclists and pedestrians just blocks away from the World Trade Center. Mangled bicycles littered the street as medics rushed to aid the victims.The attack ended as he crashed the truck into a school bus, then stepped outside brandishing imitation firearms.
New York City has more than 1,000 miles of bike routes, and more than 200 bike lanes just in Manhattan, reports “CBS This Morning” co-host Norah O’Donnell. That type of public space is one terrorists are increasingly targeting, with a tactic that is difficult to prevent. It’s a recipe for terror we’ve seen before: a driver in a speeding truck or van, killing and injuring scores of people in its path from Nice to Berlin in 2016 and from Barcelona to London this year.
Authorities found a note claiming the attack was made in the name of ISIS near the truck used in the attack, a senior law enforcement official said. “This was an act of terror, and a particularly cowardly act of terror,” New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said, “aimed at innocent civilians, aimed at people going about their lives who had no idea what was about to hit them.”
Vehicles have been used as weapons in a number of terrorist attacks in recent years, including in deadly incidents in London and Nice, France. The suspect, driving in a Home Depot rental truck, hopped a curb at West Houston Street and drove south on the bike path on the west side of West Side Highway in lower Manhattan for several blocks, officials said.
After crashing the truck into a school bus, the suspect left the vehicle while displaying imitation firearms and was shot in the abdomen by a police officer, according to the NYPD. A pellet gun and a paintball gun were recovered from the scene.
More updates will be released in the upcoming days.