A speeding car, which drove around vehicles blocking a road in Seattle in an area where a Black Lives Matter protest was taking place, has hit and seriously injured two women. The terrifying moment was caught on camera.
The two victims of the hit-and-run were taken to the Harborview medical center, one of them with life-threatening injuries, Washington State Patrol spokesperson Trooper Rick Johnson said on Twitter.
The graphic video shows a white car maneuvering around a couple of vehicles blocking the road and hitting the protesters in the process. The collision sends the victims flying as the car struggles to get back to the middle of the road.
WARNING! GRAPHIC CONTENT
Johnson posted pictures of the vehicle involved, showing extensive damage to its windshield and radiator grill. The driver was apprehended by the police.
The police pursued the vehicle that hit the two protesters on I-5 in Seattle. Same people who wanna abolish the police. pic.twitter.com/eJRyGvr57V
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) July 4, 2020
Here are two pictures of the suspect vehicle that struck two protesters on I-5 this morning. Investigation into motive and point of entry in to I-5 are still under investigation. pic.twitter.com/gU1QH6TFTu
— Trooper Rick Johnson (@wspd2pio) July 4, 2020
The white Jaguar reportedly stopped about half a mile away from the scene. Some protesters caught up with it and took its plate number before trying to confront the driver, who drove away.
Washington State Patrol Captain Ron Mead identified the victims as a 32-year-old woman from Bellingham, and a 24-year-old woman from Seattle who is now in a critical condition.
A suspect is a 27-year-old man from Seattle, who is facing multiple felony charges. He is believed to have slipped through police closure points that keep traffic off the freeway and taken a wrong turn before driving around the protester vehicles.
“At the end of the day, the interstate is not a safe place for pedestrians. We’ve been very clear about that for all 19 days that the protesters have taken the freeway,” Mead said. “My hope is that as a result of this tragedy the protesters will reconsider their desire to be on the interstate because I cannot guarantee their safety.”
The US city has been gripped by anti-racism protests since the May killing of black man George Floyd by Minneapolis police officers. Interstate-5 has been closed at times for the rallies.
There have been several similar collisions at protests throughout the US. One notorious case was in Minnesota when a fuel truck found its way onto a freeway and plowed through a crowd of protesters.
Fortunately, nobody was seriously hurt in that incident, but the driver himself was roughed up by outraged activists before being rescued and arrested by the police.