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Times Square crash victim was 18-year-old MI woman
20 May 2017, 03:56 | Darnell Patrick
Several injured, 1 dead after speeding vehicle drives into Times Square
People attend to an injured man after a auto plunged into him in Times Square in NY on May 18, 2017.
Witnesses said the motorist mounted the sidewalk in a burgundy Honda sedan and sped along for more than three city blocks, knocking people over before the auto struck a pole and came to rest at 45th Street and Broadway in Midtown Manhattan.
When the police arrived on the scene, Richard reportedly attempted to flee.
In this image made from video provided by Oscar Navarro Reyes, Richard Rojas is arrested after a fatal automobile accident on New York City's Times Square, Thursday, May 18, 2017. Police do not suspect a. It crashed into a pole on 45th Street and Broadway, where it stopped with two of its wheels in the air.
On Thursday, a speeding vehicle smashed into pedestrians on a sidewalk in New York City's Times Square, claiming 1 life and injuring 22 others.
"He murdered in cold blood", Assistant District Attorney Harrison Schweiloch said during the brief proceeding.
An 18-year-old tourist from MI was killed and her 13-year-old sister was among the 22 injured, four of them critically. The teen was reportedly visiting the city with family when a speeding auto came careening in the wrong direction and struck Elsman, her 13-year-old sister and at least 20 others.
Three people were still in critical condition with serious head injuries, and a fourth is being treated for a collapsed lung and broken pelvis, according to the complaint.
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Friends say Rojas told people he works in real estate, but it's unclear if he had any kind of realtors license, Carlin reported.
He didn't enter a plea. Rojas' lawyer, Enrico Demarco, had no comment.
Law enforcement sources say Rojas appeared to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol when he was taken into custody. His next court appearance is May 24. The auto leaned on a lamppost and steel barriers meant to block vehicles from getting on to the sidewalk.
A cause of the crash is under investigation, but authorities say it's believed to be an "isolated incident" with no nexus to terror.
Photographers snapped pictures of a wild-eyed Rojas on Thursday after he climbed from the wrecked vehicle and ran through the streets. A group that included a security supervisor at a nearby Planet Hollywood restaurant tackled him.
Following his arrest shortly after the crash at around noon, Rojas was transported to a testing facility to determine whether he had drugs or alcohol in his system. He accused the person of stealing his identity and later pleaded guilty to a harassment violation. The state motor vehicle department confirmed he was convicted of driving while impaired in both cases but still had a valid driver's license as of Thursday. He was dishonorably discharged from the Navy, where he once served aboard the USS Carney, for resisting arrest in Florida in 2014. The driver has previously been charged and arrested with menacing and criminal possession of a weapon for threatening a man.
Reuters news agency building foreman Rodney Muir said he heard what sounded like a big bang and crunching metal.
After his arrest, Rojas told the officer he was going to kill all police and military police he might see after his release from jail, the Jacksonville sheriff's office report stated.
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