8 Dead In Terror Attack Along Bike Path In New York City

NEW YORK (CBS SF) — Eight people were killed and at least 13 injured when a motorist drove onto a busy bicycle path near the World Trade Center memorial in Manhattan and struck people, then emerged from the vehicle brandishing what appeared to be a gun.

The NYPD tweeted that the driver exited the car displaying imitation firearms and was shot by police officers but was expected to survive. He was identified as Sayfullo Habibillaevic Saipov, a 29-year-old truck driver who has lived in Tampa, Florida, and New Jersey. He came to the U.S. in 2010 from Uzbekistan.

An Uber spokesperson confirmed to CBS News that Saipov was a driver for them and had passed a background check. He has been banned from the app and Uber has been in contact with the FBI and law enforcement.

A law enforcement official who was not authorized to discuss the case publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity said witnesses told police the attacker yelled, “Allahu akbar!” as he got out of the truck.

CBS News confirms from a federal law enforcement source that a note that referenced the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) was found in or near the truck used in the attack.

In a series of tweets, President Donald Trump offered “thoughts, condolences and prayers” to the victims and their families, and railed against the Islamic State militant group. “We must not allow ISIS to return, or enter, our country after defeating them in the Middle East and elsewhere.”

The White House followed with a more formal statement saying the Trump administration will “provide its full support to the New York City Police Department, including through a joint investigation with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.”

The Islamic State did not immediately claim responsibility for the attack, although the group’s supporters celebrated the incident, according to the SITE Intelligence Group.

Local officials did not publicly mention the Islamic State group’s possible involvement. Mayor Bill de Blasio said the attack “was an act of terror, and a particularly cowardly act of terror aimed at innocent civilians.”

new york terrorist attack Don Emmert Getty Images

(Don Emmert Getty Images)

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo called it a “lone wolf” attack and said there was no ongoing threat nor evidence it was part of a wider plot.

New York City Police Commissioner James O’Neill said a paintball gun and a pellet gun were recovered at the scene.

The suspect vehicle was a Home Depot rental truck which entered the pedestrian/bike path at Houston Street along the West Side Highway a few blocks north of Chambers St.

The truck rammed several people on the path from behind and ultimately crashed into a school bus at Chambers Street.

Two adults and two children on board the school bus were injured.

The incident occurred at West Street and Chambers Street around 3:10 p.m, the station reports. The NYPD said on its Twitter account just before 3:30 p.m. that one person is in custody. The department isn’t looking for any other suspects, CBS New York reports.

Witnesses told local media a vehicle drove down a nearby bike path and struck pedestrians and cyclists.

“A vehicle drove straight down a bicycle path heading south in Manhattan just mowing everything down,” witness Greg Ahl told 1010 WINS. “It looks like a vehicle drove down the bicycle path and ran everything over.”

Video from the scene showed several mangled bicycles along the bike path.

“I noticed along the bike path a bunch of wrecked bicycles and as I drove it was just more and more completely and totally wrecked bicycles and people mulling around to the side. I must’ve seen 30 or 40 bicycles like that,” Ahl said.

The NYPD tweeted that there will be increased police presence throughout the city, including at the annual Halloween parade, which draws huge crowds every year in Greenwich Village.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan, whose city suffered two terrorist car attacks earlier this year, issued a statement saying “London stands in grief and solidarity with the great city of New York.”

A spokesperson for the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, which describes itself as the oldest Muslim organization in the U.S., said in a statement, “We mourn the lives lost in New York City and stand in solidarity with our fellow Americans.”

Argentina’s Foreign Ministry says five of the nation’s citizens were among the eight people killed in the truck attack.

The deputy prime minister and foreign affairs minister of Belgium says in a tweet one of the dead was Belgian.

Belgians and Argentines also are among the 11 wounded in Tuesday’s attack.

The Argentine victims were identified as Hernán Diego Mendoza, Diego Enrique Angelini, Alejandro Damián Pagnucco, Ariel Erlij and Hernán Ferruchi. They were from the city of Rosario and were celebrating the 30th anniversary of their high school graduation, Argentina’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

Another Argentinian, Martín Ludovico Marro, is recovering at New York Presbyterian Hospital, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

The ministry says it stands “with the families in this terrible moment of deep pain, which is shared by all Argentines.”

Foreign Minister Jorge Faurie says he’s “shocked by the events in New York.”

TM and © Copyright 2017 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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