Navy veteran in custody after Times Square crash

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NEW YORK (AP) --
Friends of a man suspected of plowing his car into pedestrians in Times Square say he'd been going through a rough time.

Twenty-six-year-old Richard Rojas was taken into custody Thursday after the crash that killed a teenager and injured 22 other people.

Friend Harrison Ramos told reporters that Rojas hadn't been the same since he returned from active duty in the Navy. He says Rojas was posting "crazy stuff" online that has since been taken down.

Other friends say he was having money troubles.

One neighbor says Rojas is a "good person" and he doesn't know what happened to him.

Two law enforcement officials say Rojas told officers he was hearing voices. They spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to speak publicly.

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Police say a 26-year-old U.S. Navy veteran with two prior arrests for driving while intoxicated has been taken in custody after his car plowed into 23 pedestrians in Times Square, killing one of them.

Witnesses said Richard Rojas appeared to be intoxicated, and he was taken into custody Thursday afternoon. Witnesses reported that he drove the wrong way and on a sidewalk for at least three blocks, mowing down pedestrians.

Rojas was in custody and unable to comment. Police Commissioner James O'Neill says the crash doesn't appear to be related to terrorism.

Police say the Bronx man was being tested for alcohol and drugs.


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