What We Know About The Vehicle Attack In Lower Manhattan

Oct 31, 2017
Originally published on October 31, 2017 7:12 pm
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MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

And we are following news today of an attack in New York City. Police say a man in a rented Home Depot truck drove into a bike path, hitting pedestrians and bikers. They say at least eight people were killed and 11 injured. With us now is Mara Gay. She is a City Hall reporter for The Wall Street Journal. And she joins us now from New York City Hall. Hi, Mara.

MARA GAY: Hi. Good night.

KELLY: Hi. Can you walk us through the timeline of what happened? What are police saying actually unfolded during this attack?

GAY: Sure. So just after 3 o'clock this afternoon, police are telling us that the driver - the suspect - entered a bike path that runs all along the west side of the city. He entered near Houston Street. And then he drove south toward the World Trade Center, essentially, striking and killing people as he drove along the path. He hit pedestrians and bikers along the route.

Then when he stopped at Chambers Street, he exited the vehicle, shouted something - we're not entirely sure what - and then displayed a paintball gun, a pellet gun. And that's when he was shot by - shot and injured by a police officer who was on the scene.

KELLY: A paintball gun and a pellet gun. So to be clear, he was not carrying lethal weapons that we know of or that have been reported found at the scene?

GAY: That's accurate. And - no, that's accurate. And the city's fire commissioner, who is responsible for the city's EMS system, did tell me today that these deaths and serious injuries to pedestrians and bikers were actually caused by the vehicle, not by the pellet gun or paintball gun or anything like that. The only person who was shot with a lethal - with a, you know, legally lethal weapon was the suspect himself.

KELLY: The suspect himself, who is now in custody. We know that he is 29 years old. Have we learned any more details about his identity or a motive here?

GAY: Sure. So we have reported at The Wall Street Journal that his name is Sayfullo Saipov. I apologize if I'm not pronouncing that correctly. The name just came to us - of Florida. He lives in Florida. Or that's where he's from.

KELLY: OK.

GAY: And that's according to senior law enforcement officials. That's what we have so far.

KELLY: You live in New York. And this attack wasn't far from where we're speaking to you now at New York City and where you report to work on a daily basis. I mean, this must hit hard personally. How are you doing?

GAY: I'm doing fine. Thank you for asking. The city is truly one that keeps on going. Not that this doesn't rattle people, but people are still out and about, on their way to the Halloween parade tonight. The evening commute is continuing on. And not that this is something that you ever do get used to or want to get used to, but New Yorkers, you know, keep going. We've been here before.

KELLY: You're resilient. Mara Gay - she's a City Hall reporter for The Wall Street Journal. Thanks very much.

GAY: My pleasure. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.