At least 3 dead when suspected drunk driver crashed into New York City park during July 4 celebration, police say

NEW YORK — At least three people were killed and six others were injured when a suspected drunk driver crashed into a Manhattan park Thursday night during Fourth of July festivities, authorities said.

Two of the victims have been identified as 59-year-old Lucille Pickney and 38-year-old Hernan Pickney, who lived nearby. The name of the third victim has not been released.

Dramatic scene during the 4th of July celebration

According to New York City police, the accident happened around 9 p.m. Thursday night on the Lower East Side.

During a late-night press conference, New York Police Chief Jeffrey Maddrey said the driver of a Ford F-150 pickup truck was driving at a high rate of speed on Water Street, then ran a stop sign at the intersection of Water and Cherry Streets, then mounted the sidewalk and crashed in Corlears Hook Park.

Nine people were injured, including four who were trapped under the vehicle. Two people were pronounced dead on Thursday and a third died overnight. At least one person remains in critical condition in hospital.

Maddrey said they are still trying to determine the ages of the victims, but that at least two children were taken to an area hospital.

Alcohol suspected, no trace of terrorism, authorities say

Authorities say the incident does not appear to be related to terrorism, but they suspect alcohol may have played a role.

“A driver drove into a crowd of people who were really just celebrating, as so many New Yorkers and Americans are doing right now,” said New York City Mayor Eric Adams.

“The officers who arrived on scene did indeed smell alcohol, but we are still conducting tests,” Maddrey said.

According to the New York City Fire Department, firefighters arrived on the scene within three and a half minutes and lifted the vehicle off the victims.

The driver, whose name has not been released, was arrested on the spot with the help of good Samaritans.

“We believe there were initially people on the scene who grabbed the driver, pulled him away and made sure the driver didn’t leave until emergency services arrived,” Maddrey said.

So far, no charges have been filed.

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