Eight are dead and nine injured after a car struck pedestrians at a bus stop in Brownsville, Texas, on Sunday. Authorities suspect the act was intentional and are investigating whether the driver, who is in police custody, has extremist ties. The suspect is being held in city jail and refusing to talk, police said.
At this point, investigators have not reached any conclusion about whether the crash was a deliberate act targeting the victims because of their perceived immigration status or an accident, the sources said. Some of those hit Sunday are migrants, according to Martin Sandoval, Brownsville Police PIO. The migrants were under the care of border patrol, police said.
KRGV Channel 5 News has footage of the scene and reports that charges are forthcoming.
Sandoval said the driver is a Hispanic male and a resident of Brownsville. Police say he is facing a charge of reckless driving, but more charges are possible as the investigation continues. Toxicology results are also pending.
"I know there is a report out there, they are saying that it was intentional. That Brownsville police is saying this was an intentional accident. Well, I'm here to clarify that Brownsville police has never taken the stand that this was an intentional accident. It is a factor that we have to look at," Sandoval said.
"We grieve for the victims in Brownsville, Texas, who were run over outside a migrant shelter where people from around the world are seeking asylum and safety," the American Civil Liberties Union said in a statement Sunday. "We understand the motive is still under investigation. This horrific event comes after weeks of escalating anti-immigrant policy-making by Texas politicians and while the Biden administration considers imposing a new asylum ban aimed at deterring, rather than welcoming, migrants seeking protection."