Witnesses Stunned, Scared by Deadly Times Square Car Crash

NY Daily News - May 19, 2017

by MOLLY CRANE-NEWMAN, THOMAS TRACY, MARY MCDONNELL, MEERA JAGANNATHAN

The Crossroads of the World became the center of fear amid Thursday’s deadly Times Square car crash.

“I was really scared and beside myself,” said witness Annie Donahey, 24. “I stood in the doorway until I felt it was safe to move.”

The New York University grad recalled grabbing a cup of coffee and walking along Seventh Avenue when Richard Rojas’ maroon Honda sedan lurched through throngs of people.

“I didn’t know what was going on,” Donahey added. “I just stood there in shock and then I got really scared and ran into the doorway of the Walgreens in case more cars were coming, but cops were already shutting down the road and rendering aid.”

Wisconsinite tourist Kelly Graves, 54, was standing by the corner of 44th St. and Seventh Avenue when she heard a loud crash and turned to see people running and screaming.

“It was very scary,” she told the Daily News. “Of course I think about a terror attack — that’s the first thing I thought right away that something had happened. You actually heard a boom, and it was the crash from the vehicle.”

Meanwhile, Alison Henry — whose 72-year-old father, Thomas Henry, was hospitalized after being struck by the speeding sedan — said her cousins’ 3- and 6-year-old children were shaken after witnessing the crash.

“(My cousin) is traumatized because she saw the car hit him,” said Henry, 44. “My cousin, his wife and the two babies are visiting from Guyana. The wife is traumatized.”

To some, the scene drew an unsettling parallel to March’s attack in London, where a British man mowed down pedestrians in a rented SUV and stabbed a police officer.

“It’s so sad that that’s what the world has come to,” said Jill Drinkwater, 63. “It happened in London not long ago.”

“It’s innocent people, isn’t it? Innocent people are being killed,” added Jeanette Davis, 54, of Stratford, England. “We’ve got children and it’s just so frightening.”