Published: Sat, May 20, 2017
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Surveillance Videos Reveal Extent Of Driver's Horrifying Times Square Rampage

Surveillance Videos Reveal Extent Of Driver's Horrifying Times Square Rampage

NEW YORK (AP) - A Times Square motorist accused of steering his auto onto one of the busiest sidewalks in the US and mowing down pedestrians has been charged with murder and 20 counts of attempted murder, police say.

Richard Rojas, 26, also said he had smoked marijuana laced with PCP sometime before making a U-Turn onto the sidewalks of the bustling Crossroads of the World and plowing straight ahead into frightened tourists, according to a criminal complaint.

Rojas had dilated pupils - common after a brain injury or drug or alcohol use - and was raving as detectives questioned him in connection with the fatal crash, said a law enforcement source.

In front of his apartment building in the Mt. Eden section of the Bronx, Rojas' close friend says Rojas returned home from his service in the Navy, with psychological issues, and a drinking problem.

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Rojas's lawyer and weeping supporters had no comment.

Elsman's 13-year-old sister was also struck by the vehicle, but survived, police said.

Rojas, wearing the same red T-shirt and jeans he was photographed in the day earlier, appeared subdued Friday during a brief court appearance where prosecutors detailed murder and attempted murder charges.

He did not enter a plea, and is due back in court next week. The driver of the vehicle, identified by police as Richard Rojas, 26, of the Bronx, was screaming and flailing as he got out of the auto after hitting multiple people, Bradix said.

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When Rojas got out of the auto, he started to run from the scene but was tackled by traffic cops and civilians.

"When he hits the stanchion, there is a traffic agent that ends up tackling him". Rojas spent his final months in the Navy at the Naval Air Station in Jacksonville, Florida. His job classification was that of electrician's mate fireman apprentice, the records show.

The Navy vet was arrested just last week and charged with pointing a knife at a notary, whom he accused of stealing his identity. The arresting officer said Rojas screamed, "My life is over!" as he was being detained.

They said Rojas, a former US Navy veteran, has a record of drink-driving and is now being tested for alcohol and drugs. He was discharged in 2014 as the result of a special court martial, a Navy official said.

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