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Friday, April 19, 2024

U-Haul driver’s violent rampage in Brooklyn left one dead, eight injured

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This December 2018 photo provided by the Nevada Department of Corrections shows Weng Sor, who authorities say was driving a U-Haul truck that struck and injured several people in New York City before police were able to pin the vehicle against a building. It followed a mileslong pursuit through Brooklyn. (Nevada Department of Corrections via AP)

In Brooklyn, New York City, a U-Haul truck driver hit nine people, leaving one pedestrian dead and eight injured.

According to the New York Times (NYT) and the Associated Press on the 13th (local time), a U-Haul rental truck was reported to be striking pedestrians and cyclists in Bay Ridge Area at southwestern Brooklyn, at around 10:30 a.m. that day.

The driver continued his “violent rampage” without responding to the police’s restraint, and was arrested by the police 5km away from the entrance of the tunnel leading to Manhattan.

At least eight people, including seven civilians and one police officer, are being treated at the hospital, and two of them are in critical condition, the New York Police Department (NYPD) said.

“There’s been a violent rampage in Brooklyn,” NYPD commissioner Keechant L. Sewell told the press. “There’s no evidence of terrorism.”

“The driver knew he was hitting people,” New York City Council member Justin Brannan told local broadcaster NY1 that it appeared to be an intentional crash against an unspecified number of people.

Security camera footage on the site showed a U-Haul truck hitting a scooter and rushing to the sidewalk, almost colliding with a pedestrian, but the pedestrian managed to avoid it, AP said.

Amanda Perez, 39, who works for a real estate company near the scene of the accident, told the NYT that there was a big commotion with a sound of a truck dragging something.

Police did not identify the truck driver, but the AP reported that the driver was a man named Weng Sor with a long history of mental illness, according to the suspect’s son.

Stephen Sor, 30, told the AP at his Brooklyn home, “My father often skips medicine and does this. It’s not the first time he’s been arrested or going to jail,” he said.

BY HA SUYOUNG [ha.suyoung@joongang.co.kr]