NYC Official Says Attacker Shouted 'Allahu Akbar'

 
AP Bebeto Matthews

NEW YORK (AP) — A law enforcement official says that witnesses told police that the man who drove a truck onto a bike path in New York City, killing eight people, and injuring about a dozen others, shouted "Allahu akbar," a phrase often used by radical Islamic terrorists, which translates to, “Allah is great” or “Allah is greater.”

Police Commissioner James O'Neill was asked at a news conference whether the suspect shouted the phrase, which means "God is great" in Arabic, or something like it. O'Neill replied, "Yeah. He did make a statement when he exited the vehicle," though he declined to elaborate.

O'Neill says the method of attack and the suspect's statement enabled officials "to label this a terrorist event." He says the 29-year-old man entered the bike path and drove south, hitting pedestrians and cyclists. He then hit a school bus, injuring at least two adults. The man exited the vehicle brandishing a paintball gun and a pellet gun. He was then shot in the abdomen by a police officer and is now hospitalized.

New York's mayor has labeled the attack a "cowardly act of terror." President Trump says in a tweet, "In NYC, looks like another attack by a very sick and deranged person." and adds, "NOT IN THE U.S.A.!" Vice President Mike Pence says those responsible for the attack "must be held accountable."

___________

Associated Press writer Colleen Long in New York contributed

  • Available on the App Store
  • Available on Google Play