Pickup truck driver veers into Pride parade, leaving at least one dead
| Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) on the phone after the incident at the Pride celebration.
Update: Justin Knight, the President of the Fort Lauderdale’s Gay Men’s Chorus, confirmed via email to media reporters that the driver was “part of the Chorus family.” Knight added, “To my knowledge, this was not an attack on the LGBTQ community.”
Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz has also confirmed that she is safe, but that she is “deeply shaken and devastated.” This story is ongoing and will continue to be updated.
A man has left at least three people injured after he drove his pickup truck into a crowd at a Pride celebration in Wilton Manors, Florida, on the evening of June 18. At least one of those injured in the apparent accident has died.
Out Fort Lauderdale mayor Dean Trantalis (D), Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL), Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL), and Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried (D) — a candidate for governor — were all in attendance at Saturday’s festivities.
They were not harmed physically, but Wasserman Schultz was among many left emotionally shaken from witnessing the apparent attack. She was reportedly feet away from the truck when it came railing into the crowd.
The attack took place right at the beginning of a twilight parade recognizing Pride in the Wilton Manors community just north of Fort Lauderdale, which was starting after 7:00 pm.
According to WSVN, a white pickup truck was amongst vehicles lined up to take part in the parade, and directly behind the vehicle that Rep. Wasserman Schultz was in. When it was the vehicle’s turn to move his vehicle in line and start the procession, the driver then drove into the crowd.
“A tragic incident occurred at today’s Stonewall event. Out of respect for everyone involved, the parade has been canceled and a thorough investigation is being conducted,” Wilton Manors mayor Scott Newton announced.
Local10 reporter Christian De La Rosa, who witnessed the incident, reported to his outlet that the driver was taken into custody. “He appears just fine… [and] not distraught,” he said in a live phone call.
“He appeared to be part of the parade,” he noted, “he was wearing a Pride shirt.”
Other witnesses said he appeared to be wearing a Fort Lauderdale Gay Men’s Chorus shirt and expressed that it was an accident.
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