News & Politics

One Person Dead, More than 30 Injured After Car Plows Into Crowd on Las Vegas Strip

 A car plowed through a crowd of pedestrians in Las Vegas on Sunday night, killing one person and injuring 36 more outside Planet Hollywood, the hotel and casino where the Miss Universe pageant was being held. The incident took place as the Miss Universe pageant was wrapping up its live taping after crowning the 2015 winner, Miss Philippines.

Fire department officials said during a press conference that seven victims are in critical condition, and four have been treated and released. Early reports characterized the crash as a “major accident,” but now authorities say they are not sure if it was an accident or intentional. Since then, the number of people in critical condition has been downgraded to six.

The Daily Mail reports:

One person has been killed and at least 30 have been injured on the Las Vegas Strip after a female driver intentionally plowed into pedestrians on the sidewalk. The incident took place at around 6.40pm on Sunday in front of the Paris Hotel & Casino and Planet Hollywood, where the 2015 Miss Universe beauty pageant was held.

At a press conference at the crash site, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Captain Brett Zimmerman said this was an intentional act. The African American driver in her 20s hit pedestrians on two different sections of the sidewalk while heading north on Las Vegas Boulevard near Bellagio Way with a toddler in the back seat.

Zimmerman said that the suspect drove onto the sidewalk once, hitting pedestrians, then drove onto it again at a different spot moments later, striking more people. The motive behind the attack is unknown, police said.

Zimmerman confirmed it was not an act of terrorism, adding that a three-year-old child was in the back seat of the car the woman was driving at the time of the crash. The toddler and driver were not injured. Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Lt. Dan McGrath said the woman was driving a 1996 Oldsmobile that was registered in Oregon and that she had recently moved to the area.

Rachel Aston of the Las Vegas Review-Journal posted some pictures of the scene on Twitter:

Via Fox 13, Salt Lake City:

 During the press conference, police stated the crash occurred around 6:38 p.m. local time and involved a northbound vehicle on Las Vegas Boulevard. The car went onto a sidewalk and then veered toward pedestrians.

CNN reports the driver who hit pedestrians at the Las Vegas Strip is in custody, and is undergoing various tests, including one for alcohol, authorities said. Authorities also stated at this point it is unclear if the crash was an intentional act or an accident.

An eyewitness described the chaotic scene and said that a woman was behind the wheel.

“Everyone was running … and as I was running, I saw a car up on the sidewalk coming to toward us,” a witness told CNN affiliate KLAS. “I saw a lady, she didn’t seem like she wanted to stop the car, she had both hands on her wheel.”

The witness said people tried to stop the driver.

“I saw men running after her, yelling, ‘stop, stop!’ As she was passing, we saw people running after her. Everyone was so frantic and just running around.”

Ricardo Torres of the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports that the woman is getting her blood tested, but she was not exhibiting “extreme impairment”: