Times Square crash victim was 18-year-old MI woman

Elias Hubbard
May 20, 2017

According to witnesses, Rojast mounted the sidewalk in a burgundy Honda sedan and sped along for more than three city blocks, knocking people over before his auto hit a pole and came to rest on a street in Midtown Manhattan, Reuters reports.

Officials say he had served in the U.S. Navy but was discharged following disciplinary problems. "I wanted to kill them", during his arrest, and also said he heard "voices", according to the USA media.

Rojas enlisted in the service in July 2011 and spent six months on the destroyer USS Carney in 2012 while the ship conducted pirate interdiction operations off the Horn of Africa, naval records show.

Navy records show Rojas enlisted in September 2011 and was based in IL and Florida, working as an electrician's mate fireman apprentice. But sources said Rojas initially tested positive for marijuana.

The Navy vet was arrested just last week and charged with pointing a knife at a notary, whom he accused of stealing his identity. He pleaded guilty to a harassment violation.

Police sources said the suspect, who has two previous arrests for drunk driving, was being tested for alcohol. He was discharged in 2014 as the result of a special court martial, a Navy official said.

Other witnesses said the vehicle drove against traffic and onto the pavement before striking the pedestrians at about midday local time. They don't indicate why.

Rojas was due to appear in Manhattan's criminal court on Friday to be arraigned on one count of second-degree murder, five counts of aggravated vehicular homicide and 20 counts of attempted murder. Details of the circumstances were not immediately available.

Thursday's mayhem began at noon on a hot, clear day that brought large crowds of people into the streets to enjoy the good weather. "I don't think there was actually time for screaming". "She was bright. She was amusing". It was unclear if Rojas has a lawyer.

The apartment building where Rojas lives was cordoned off by police Thursday. The deceased was an 18-year-old woman who was visiting the city, and her sister, 13, was also injured.White House press secretary Sean Spicer wrote on Twitter that President Donald Trump "has been made aware of the situation in Times Square and will continue to receive updates".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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