Times Square car crash driver, a US Navy veteran who “heard voices”
A man steered his car onto a sidewalk running through the heart of Times Square and mowed down pedestrians for three blocks Thursday, killing a teenager, then emerged from his wrecked vehicle wild-eyed and waving his arms before he was subdued by police and bystanders. The carnage raised immediate fears of a terrorist attack, but investigators quickly turned their focus to the sobriety and mental health of the driver, identified as Bronx resident Richard Rojas. The driver, a 26-year-old U.S. Navy veteran, told officers he was hearing voices and expected to die, according to two law enforcement officials. Rojas enlisted in the Navy in 2011 and was an electrician’s mate fireman apprentice. In 2012 he served aboard the U.S.S. Carney, a destroyer. He was most recently based at the Naval Air Station in Jacksonville, Florida, and was discharged in 2014.