One Killed After Driver Crashes Into Pride Parade In South Florida
Authorities did not immediately say whether they believe the crash was intentional.
06/19/2021 08:38 PM ET
Updated Jun 19, 2021
WILTON MANORS, Fla. (AP) — A driver slammed into spectators Saturday evening at the start of a Pride parade in South Florida, killing one person and seriously injuring another, authorities said
The pickup truck driver acted like he was part of the Wilton Manors Stonewall Pride Parade but then suddenly accelerated when he was told he was next, crashing into the victims, Fort Lauderdale Mayor Dean Trantalis said, according to WSVN-TV. Wilton Manors is just north of Fort Lauderdale.
Authorities said one of the victims later succumbed to their injuries. The other victim was hospitalized.
The driver of the pickup truck was taken into custody. Authorities did not immediately give further details about the victims or say whether they think the crash was intentional. Fort Lauderdale Police Detective Ali Adamson told reporters that authorities are investigating “all possibilities,” with the help of the FBI.
Adamson said authorities are speaking with the driver, but she did not say whether he had been charged.
Trantalis said he believes the crash was “deliberate” and an attack against the LGBTQ community.
Mayor of Fort Lauderdale, where truck ran into crowd at Pride parade: “This was a terrorist attack against the LGBTQ community. He came here to destroy people. This was clearly no accident.”
— South Florida Sun Sentinel (@SunSentinel) June 20, 2021
Photos and video from the scene showed Democratic U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz in tears while in a convertible at the parade.
In a statement Saturday night, Wasserman Schultz said she was safe but “deeply shaken and devastated that a life was lost.”
“I am so heartbroken by what took place at this celebration,” she said. “May the memory of the life lost be for a blessing.”
Photos from the scene where a truck drove into a crowd taking part in The Stonewall Pride Parade and Street Festival in Wilton Manors. Rep. Wasserman Schultz is seen reacting to the incident. @SunSentinel
— Chris Day (@cjday1900) June 19, 2021
Spectator Christina Currie told the South Florida SunSentinel that she was with her family at the start of the parade.
“All of a sudden there was a loud revving of a truck and a crash through a fence,” Currie said. “It was definitely an intentional act right across the lanes of traffic.”
Wilton Manors police tweeted Saturday night that the public is not in danger.
“Though authorities are still gathering information, we know two individuals marching to celebrate inclusion and equality were struck by a vehicle,” Broward County Sheriff Gregory Tony said in a statement. “This tragedy took place within feet of me and my (Broward Sheriff’s Office) team, and we are devastated having witnessed this horrific incident.”
June is Pride Month, commemorating the June 1969 police raid targeting gay patrons at the Stonewall Inn in New York that led to an uprising of LGBTQ Americans and served as a catalyst for the gay rights movement.
Due to a tragic event, the Stonewall Pride Parade has been cancelled but the festival events will continue.
— wmpd411 (@WMPD411) June 20, 2021
BREAKING: I just spoke with Fort Lauderdale mayor who tells me one of the people run over in Wilton Manors right before Pride parade started has died. Says another victim is clinging to life. He witnessed the whole thing and says it was a deliberate attack on the LGBTQ community.
— Gina Benitez (@GinaMBenitez) June 20, 2021
BREAKING: At least 2 people have been hit by a truck at the beginning of the @WiltonManorsCty #Pride parade. @delarosaWPLG was only yards away at the time. He spoke with @DeanTrantalis. @WPLGLocal10​
— Ian Margol (@IanMargolWPLG) June 19, 2021
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