A 24-year-old protester who was hit by a car during protests on Saturday in Seattle has died, according to UW Medicine.
Summer Taylor, the activist, was in critical condition when a man drove onto the closed Interstate 5 freeway into a crowd of people. Another protester, Diaz Love, was also injured by the car and is in intensive care at Harborview Medical Center. The 32-year-old was amongst the group of protesters.
The suspect is being charged for multiple felony charges, according to Capt. Ron Mead of the Washington State Patrol. Also Read– Armed protesters march through Confederate memorial park
On Saturday afternoon, at exactly 1:30 am, the suspect drove his vehicle into protesters on a section of the interstate that has been closed off by WSP. Mead said the suspect drove around several “support vehicles” that protesters were using to protest themselves and block the I-5 and onto the should of the interstate, where protesters were marching.
“A vehicle drove through the closure and struck multiple pedestrians on the freeway,” Trooper Rick Johnson wrote in a tweet.
Most of the protesters scattered to avoid being hit, but “unfortunately two were struck by the vehicle,” Mead stated at a press briefing.
Vehicular assault suspect not yet charged
The 27-year-old suspect showed no signs of impairment after officers conducted a sobriety test. Investigations are ongoing.
Seattle has seen a large number of protests against police brutality and systematic racism. A six-block area in Seattle is currently controlled by protesters after police abandoned their precinct.
When questioned if this was a “targeted attack,” Mead said, “We don’t know that, that does remain a focus of our investigation.”
The suspect has not been charged.
Mead concluded with the statement that the freeway is not a safe spot for pedestrians.
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“Whether they’re protesters, whether they’re homeless, whether they’re broken down motorists, the freeway is simply not a safe place for pedestrians and we’ve said that steadfast,” he said. “My hope is the result of this tragedy, the protesters will reconsider their desire to be on the interstate because I cannot guarantee their safety, plain and simple.”