The driver “targeted” the victims around 4:45am local time, authorities said. They added that the suspected attacker fled the scene; the search for the driver is ongoing.
A knife fight broke out at a hookah bar in Queens ahead of the attack, the New York Daily News reported citing police and a witness. The car came “from nowhere and hit the whole group” on the sidewalk, the witness told the local media, adding that “the car was going really fast” and he saw “bodies flying.”
BREAKING: car hits 5 people in Queens; 1 person pronounced dead, 2 others with serious injuries. Police looking for white sedan which fled the scene pic.twitter.com/rWqVuJd3lj
— Kristin Thorne (@KristinThorne) December 3, 2017
At least six persons were struck by a car and two stabbed in the incident, New York Police Department reported on Twitter. One person, apparently not the driver, is in custody.
BREAKING UPDATE: Numbers have gone up–police now confirm 6 people were hit by a car, and 2 were also stabbed here in #Queens. 1 person is under arrest. Live report at 830 on @CBSNewYork #CBSNewYork pic.twitter.com/wenzMHXReh
— Reena Roy (@reenaroy) December 3, 2017
“The bodies went flying. The car was going really fast, at least 50 mph on the sidewalk,” a witness identified as Rogers told NY Daily News. He said he saw a woman yelling “stop” as she tried to hold back someone fighting on the scene, before the car rammed into the whole group.
Police are now looking into the details, but so far the incident is not believed to be terrorism related, according to AP.