November 1, 2017 2:12 am
Updated: November 1, 2017 9:02 am

Vehicle ramming attacks: a timeline of incidents from 2006 to now

An incident in New York is being investigated as a terrorist attack. Police say eight people are dead and more than a dozen others are injured. Ines de La Cuetara reports.

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At least eight people were killed after a pickup truck was driven through a bike path in New York City on Halloween.

The incident was called a “cowardly act of terror” that had echoes of many attacks that have taken place in recent years.

Coverage of vehicle-ramming incidents on Globalnews.ca:

Sayfullo Habibullaevic Saipov, a 29-year-old Uzbekistan national, was arrested following the attack.

This year has seen a spike in incidents in which vehicles have rammed into crowds of people; they have taken place in countries such as Canada,  England, France and the U.S.

Attacks like these have been credited to Islamist groups going back to 2008, but they’ve also allegedly been used by people with other ideologies. One suspect in an attack in London was motivated by hate for Muslims, prosecutors said.

Here’s a timeline of ramming incidents going back to 2006:

March 3, 2006 — University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill


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Iranian-American Mohammed Taheri-azar drove an SUV into a crowd of students at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, calling it revenge for the killing of Muslims, CNN reported. Nine people were hurt.

Oct. 20, 2014 — Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que.

Martin Couture-Rouleau, a man with known jihadist leanings, killed Canadian Forces warrant officer Patrice Vincent and hurt another soldier after he drove into them in a parking lot at a shopping mall in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que. Police shot Couture-Rouleau and killed him.

Oct. 22, 2014 — Jerusalem

Abdel Rahman al-Shaludi was shot and killed by police after he drove into a crowd at a Jerusalem rail station and killed a three-month-old girl and a tourist from Ecuador, CNN reported. He had reportedly published militant thoughts on social media. Israeli outlets said he supported Hamas, but his family denied this.

Dec. 21, 2014 — Dijon, France

A driver hurt 13 pedestrians following vehicle attacks in five parts of the city of Dijon, France in 30 minutes, USA Today reported. Witnesses to the attacks said they heard him shout “Allahu Akbar,” which means “God is great” in Arabic. The suspect was believed to be mentally unstable, NBC News reported.

Dec. 22, 2014 — Nantes, France

On the following day, a man killed one pedestrian and hurt nine others at a Christmas market in Nantes, France, according to USA Today. Witnesses also said this driver was heard shouting “Allahu Akbar,” and authorities said he, too, was mentally unstable, according to NBC News.

June 26, 2015 — Saint-Quentin-Fallavier, France

Yassine Salhi allegedly drove a van into a building that contained flammable substances at a factory near Lyon. The attack set off a blast that injured several people. The decapitated body of Salhi’s boss was found near the site of the explosion. Salhi was later found dead in prison south of Paris, BBC News reported.

Jan. 1, 2016 — Valence, France

A soldier was hurt after a man twice drove a car into four soldiers who were standing watch over a mosque, USA Today reported. BBC News said that an older bystander was hurt after being hit in the calf with a stray bullet. The suspect was believed to have acted alone; authorities said jihadist material was found on his computer.

July 14, 2016 — Nice, France

In Nice, France, Tunisian national Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel drove a 19-tonne truck into a crowd of people at a Bastille Day fireworks display, killing 86 in what was called the deadliest vehicle attack ever carried out in Europe, Newsweek reported. ISIS said it was responsible for the attack.

Nov. 28, 2016 — Ohio State University

Eleven people were killed when Somali immigrant and student Abdul Razak Ali Artan, 18, drove a car into a group of people on the Ohio State University campus before he emerged from the vehicle with a knife and then charged at people, CNN reported. Police believed Artan was inspired by ISIS and Anwar al-Awlaki, an al-Qaida leader who was killed in a drone strike in 2011.

Dec. 19, 2016 — Berlin, Germany

Twelve people were killed in December after Tunisian national Anis Amri allegedly drove a truck into a Christmas market in central Berlin, which he had stolen from a Polish person he had killed. Authorities spent four days looking for Amri before police shot him dead in a Milan suburb, Newsweek reported.

March 22, 2017 — London, England

Four people were killed and at least 50 hurt after Khalid Masood drove a car into a group of people on the Westminster Bridge.

April 7, 2017 — Stockholm, Sweden

Four people were killed and 15 injured after Rakhmat Akilov, an Uzbek man, was suspected of driving a beer truck into a department store in Stockholm. Uzbek security services had warned Sweden that Akilov had been recruited by ISIS.

June 3, 2017 — London, England

Eight people were killed and 48 injured after three attackers mowed people down on London Bridge and then stabbed others in the Borough Market. Suspected attackers Khuram Butt, Rachid Redouane and Youssef Zaghba were later killed by police.

June 19, 2017 — London, England

Welshman Darren Osborne was charged with murder and attempted murder in connection with an attack that saw a van driven into a crowd of people close to two mosques in north London. The van ran over worshippers as they were leaving Finsbury Park mosque, said the Muslim Council of Britain. Prosecutors have alleged that Osborne was motivated by hate for Muslims, and that he held extreme political views.

Aug. 9, 2017 — Levallois-Perret, France

Hamou Benlatrèche was apprehended after a BMW was allegedly parked in an alley before it rammed into a group of soldiers as they were heading out on patrol in the Parisian suburb of Levallois-Perret. The suspect was hurt in a gunfight that preceded the capture.

Aug. 12, 2017 — Charlottesville, Va.

A 32-year-old woman was killed and 34 people were injured after white nationalists clashed with counter-protesters in Charlottesville, Va. White supremacist James Fields, 20, allegedly drove a car into a crowd of counter-protestors after a white national rally, killing Heather Heyer while also leaving another 19 injured. The clashes began on the night before the rally, as protesters marched through the University of Virginia campus with torches lit.

Aug. 17, 2017 — Barcelona, Spain

Spain’s northeastern region of Catalonia was hit by twin militant attacks in August that killed a total of 16 people on Aug. 17. Younes Abouyaaqoub, 22, was suspected of driving a rented van that plowed down people on the Las Ramblas promenade, killing 14 before making a getaway. Abouyaaqoub was later shot dead after he was spotted holding what appeared to be a belt with explosives.

Aug. 17, 2017 — Cambrils, Spain

Nine hours after the attack in Barcelona, a group of men drove a vehicle rammed into people in Cambrils, leaving one woman dead and hurting five other pedestrians. Police shot five suspects dead, one of whom had escaped. Some of the individuals were seen wearing fake suicide belts, BBC News reported.

Sept. 30, 2017 — Edmonton, Alta.

In September, a man stabbed a police officer before he struck four pedestrians with a U-Haul vehicle. The attack took place outside the Commonwealth Stadium where, at 8:15 p.m., a white Chevrolet Malibu hit a traffic barricade and rammed into Const.

Mike Chernyk before he was stabbed several times. The officer was later released. Abdulahi Sharif, a Somali national, was charged with five counts of attempted murder, five counts of dangerous operation of a vehicle, one count of criminal flight causing bodily harm and one count of possession of a weapon.

  • With files from Rahul Kalvapalle, Reuters and The Associated Press

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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