US: Two killed after explosives-laden car barrels into crowd after rock concert in New York

At least two people died and five others, including three pedestrians, were injured when a car filled with explosives barreled into a crowd of people leaving a rock concert in upstate New York on Monday (January 1, 2024).

 Car filled with explosives barreled into a crowd of people in New York. Photo Courtesy: Screengrab from video from X page 

The fiery crash occurred at 12:50 a.m. outside the Kodak Center in Rochester, where roughly 1,000 people were filing out after a New Year’s Eve show, reported New York Post.

Rochester officers were helping pedestrians cross the street when a Ford Expedition sped toward the mob, but smashed instead into an Uber that was pulling out of a nearby parking lot, law enforcement sources told the newspaper.

Police Chief David Smith said at a press conference as quoted by the newspaper: “The force of the collision caused the two vehicles to go through a group of pedestrians that were in the crosswalk and then into two other vehicles.”

The car exploded into flames and firefighters took nearly an hour to douse it.

A couple riding inside the Uber were killed, while their driver was rushed to the hospital in non-life threatening condition, sources and police told the newspaper.

The driver of the car, who tried to mow down the crowd, was taken to hospital with life-threatening injuries.

He died of his injuries around 8 p.m. Monday and was identified as Michael Avery, law enforcement sources told the New York Post.

Police Chief David Smith said investigators found at least a dozen gasoline canisters scattered across the pavement and inside the Expedition after the fire was extinguished.

The incident is reportedly being probed as an incident of domestic terrorism.

Avery, from Syracuse, had rented a hotel room in Rochester, where police conducted a search and recovered a suicide note and journal, law enforcement sources told New York Post.

Investigators are reviewing the journal for any clues into the attack and have interviewed family members who said they believed the suspect had bipolar depression, though he was never officially diagnosed, the sources said.