A driver plowed a pickup truck down a crowded bike path alongside the Hudson River in Manhattan on Tuesday, killing eight people and injuring 11 earlier than being shot by a police officer in what officers are calling the deadliest terrorist assault on New York Metropolis since Sept. 11, 2001.
The rampage ended when the motorist — whom the police recognized as Sayfullo Saipov, 29 — smashed into a faculty bus, jumped out of his truck and ran up and down the freeway waving a pellet gun and paintball gun and shouting “Allahu akbar,” Arabic for “God is nice,” earlier than he was shot within the stomach by the officer. He remained in crucial situation on Tuesday night.
Mayor Invoice de Blasio declared the rampage a terrorist assault and federal regulation enforcement authorities have been main the investigation. Investigators found handwritten notes in Arabic close to the truck that indicated allegiance to the Islamic State, two regulation enforcement officers stated. However investigators had not uncovered proof of any direct or enabling ties between Mr. Saipov and ISIS and have been treating the episode as a case of an “impressed” attacker, two counterterrorism officers stated.
Mr. de Blasio stated at a information convention, “Based mostly on info we’ve got at this second, this was an act of terror, and a very cowardly act of terror aimed toward harmless civilians.”
5 of the individuals killed have been Argentine vacationers who traveled to New York for a 30-year highschool reunion celebration, stated a senior official in Santa Fe Province, the place they have been from. The Argentine authorities stated they have been Hernán Mendoza, Diego Angelini, Alejandro Pagnucco, Ariel Erlij and Hernán Ferruchi. Martín Ludovico Marro, a sixth member of the group, was wounded. Belgian officers stated a type of killed and three of the injured have been from Belgium.
Mr. Saipov got here to america from Uzbekistan in 2010, and had a inexperienced card that allowed everlasting authorized residence. He had apparently lived in Paterson, N.J., and Tampa, Fla. An official stated Mr. Saipov rented a truck from a Residence Depot in Passaic, N.J., the place a white Toyota minivan believed to be his was discovered parked.
The truck got here crashing to a cease close to the nook of Chambers and West Streets by Stuyvesant Excessive Faculty. Sirus Minovi, 14, a freshman there who was hanging out with associates, stated individuals scattered.
“We heard individuals screaming, ‘gun’ ‘shooter’ and ‘run away,’” Sirus stated. “We thought it was a Halloween prank.”
He realized it was not a joke when he noticed the person staggering by way of the intersection, waving weapons and screaming phrases he couldn’t make out. A passer-by approached the attacker, apparently making an attempt to calm him, Sirus stated, till the person realized the attacker had a gun. The person “put his arms up and was backing away,” Sirus stated.
Virtually instantly, as investigators started to look into Mr. Saipov’s historical past, it turned clear that he had been on the radar of federal authorities. Three officers stated he had come to the federal authorities’ consideration because of an unrelated investigation, nevertheless it was not clear whether or not that was as a result of he was a good friend, an affiliate or a member of the family of somebody underneath scrutiny or as a result of he himself had been the main target of an investigation.
During the last two years, a terrorism investigation by the F.B.I., the Division of Homeland Safety, the New York Police Division and federal prosecutors in Brooklyn resulted in fees towards 5 males from Uzbekistan and one from Kazakhstan of offering materials help to ISIS. A number of of the lads have pleaded responsible. It’s unclear whether or not Mr. Saipov was related with that investigation.
Martin Feely, a spokesman for the New York F.B.I. workplace, declined to touch upon whether or not Mr. Saipov was recognized to the bureau.
F.B.I. brokers have been anticipated to look Mr. Saipov’s residence in Paterson, N.J., and his automotive on Tuesday night time, a regulation enforcement official stated. A telephone, which was recovered on the scene of the assault, additionally can be searched, one other official stated.
The assault unfolded as close by faculties have been letting out on a Halloween afternoon. It ended 5 blocks north of the World Commerce Middle. The driving force left a roughly mile-long crime scene: a tree-lined bike path strewn with our bodies, mangled bicycles and bicycle elements, from wheels twisted like pretzels to a dislodged seat.
Mr. Saipov, a slim, bearded man, was seen in movies operating via visitors after the assault with a paintball gun in a single hand and a pellet gun within the different. Six individuals died on the scene and two others died at a hospital, officers stated. The authorities credited the officer who shot him with saving lives.
“He was Johnny-on-the-spot and he takes the man down,” a metropolis official stated.
Coming 5 months after a automotive rammed into pedestrians in Occasions Sq., killing one, Tuesday’s assault once more highlighted the hazard of a car assault on busy metropolis streets. The Occasions Sq. assault was not an act of terrorism. However each occasions delivered to thoughts the terrorist attack last year in Nice, France, through which a cargo truck killed scores of individuals celebrating Bastille Day.
The episodes additionally evoked calls from terrorist magazines, together with in an version of Rumiyah, a magazine utilized by ISIS, for attackers to mow down pedestrians with vans, proceed the assaults with a knife or a gun and declare duty by shouting or leaving leaflets.
College students in Halloween costumes streamed out of close by faculties after lockdowns have been lifted and huddled with mother and father. Their faces, as soon as painted for the vacation, have been streaked with tears.
Emily, 12, a seventh-grader at I.S. 289 whose father requested that her final identify not be used, had been strolling on her ordinary route house when different college students turned and ran within the different path.
“All the youngsters have been screaming, ‘Run!’, ‘Gun!’ ‘Run inside,’” she stated, nonetheless sporting cat ears. She stated moms pushing strollers and youngsters in costumes ran in a herd again towards the varsity.
President Trump responded to the assault on Twitter: “In NYC, seems like one other assault by a really sick and deranged individual. Regulation enforcement is following this intently. NOT IN THE U.S.A.!”
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo cautioned at a information convention, “There’s no proof that means a wider plot or a wider scheme.” Within the aftermath, metropolis and state regulation enforcement businesses elevated safety at high-profile places.
Terrorism analysts famous that on Monday a French pro-ISIS media unit, referred to as the Centre Mediatique An-Nur, put out a selected menace for Halloween, mentioning the date on a banner unfold on the encrypted app Telegram and on ISIS-affiliated Twitter accounts.
Mr. Saipov wove a lethal path on a stretch often bustling with commuters, runners and cyclists, drawn by the downtown workplaces close by or the shimmering river.
He turned onto the bike path alongside the West Aspect Freeway at Houston Road simply after three p.m. and sped south, hanging quite a few pedestrians and cyclists, lots of them within the again, the authorities stated. Individuals scattered and dived to the asphalt.
The truck, labeled with an indication saying, “Lease me beginning at $19,” rammed into the bus close to Chambers Road. The bus serves two faculties in Decrease Manhattan and transports college students with particular wants. Two adults and two youngsters on the bus have been injured, the authorities stated.