Police: 9 dead, 16 injured after van hits pedestrians in Toronto; driver in custody

TORONTO —

Nine people are dead and 16 are injured after a van jumped a curb Monday in a busy intersection in Toronto, according to Toronto police.

The van struck eight to 10 people and fled the scene before it was found and the driver was taken into custody, Canadian police said.

It was not immediately clear what caused the van to strike the pedestrians in a busy intersection in the north-central part of the city. Police did not immediately identify the driver.

“At this point it’s too early to tell what if any motive there was. We are also unable right now to tell the extent or the number of persons injured,” Toronto police spokeswoman Meaghan Gray said.

Canadian Minister of Public Safety Ralph Goodale said authorities “cannot come to any firm conclusions at this time,” as to whether the incident was an act of terrorism.

A witness,” Phil Zullo, told Canadian Press that he saw police arresting a man who had been driving a Ryder rental truck and saw people “strewn all over the road” where the incident occurred.

“It must have seen about five, six people being resuscitated by bystanders and by ambulance drivers,” Zullo said. “It was awful. Brutal.”

Toronto paramedic spokeswoman Kim McKinnon said first responders were on scene treating multiple patients, but wouldn’t confirm the number or severity of injuries.

Police shut down the Yonge and Finch intersection following the Monday afternoon incident and Toronto’s transit agency said it has suspended service on the subway line running through the area.

The incident occurred as Cabinet ministers from the major industrial countries were gathered in Canada to discuss a range of international issues in the run-up to the G7 meeting near Quebec City in June.

A United States State Department spokesperson said the U.S. delegation is safe and the department is checking to see if any Americans were injured in the incident.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau expressed his sympathies for those involved. “Our hearts go out to everyone affected,” Trudeau said in Ottawa. “We are going to have more to learn and more to say in the coming hours.”

ABC7 Chicago contributed to this report.

(Copyright ©2018 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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Source: Chicago News

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