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Driver runs into crowd, kills 1 in front of Bally's [Archive] - DVD Talk Forum


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09-22-05, 07:15 PM
Although this sounds intentional, I'm surprised this type of thing doesn't happen more, with the number of pedestrians near all that traffic and all the frustrated drivers trying to run lights and so on. What a shame...

Police: Driver Hit Vegas Crowd on Purpose
Sep 22 1:50 PM US/Eastern
Associated Press Writer


A driver intentionally steered his car onto a sidewalk on the crowded Las Vegas Strip and then accelerated in a deadly scene resembling "humans being mowed down like a lawnmower," police said.

One person died and 13 were hospitalized, many with major injuries. A 27-year-old man faces charges of murder and attempted murder, Deputy Police Chief Greg McCurdy said Thursday.

"It appears he did this intentionally. The reason is questionable," McCurdy said.

The man, Stephen Michael Ressa of Rialto, Calif., had also been sought by his hometown police in a near-fatal assault Monday on his mother, who owned the car Ressa was driving in Las Vegas.

The victims, including 11 tourists, were walking in front of the Bally's and Paris hotel-casinos on Wednesday when the car struck them, then crashed into a wall and came to a stop in a landscaped area in front of Bally's.

The injured were strewn along the sidewalk and were being treated in the street by emergency personnel as stunned tourists looked on. Traffic on the Las Vegas Strip was stopped for almost five hours.

Ressa was unhurt and was arrested at the scene by an off-duty officer, police said.

Ressa was held Thursday without bail at the county jail and is scheduled to appear in court Friday.

During interviews with detectives, Ressa appeared lucid and correctly answered questions about his ability to determine right and wrong, McCurdy said. But Ressa's statements were "bizarre in nature," McCurdy said.

Results of alcohol and drug tests were pending.

The pedestrian who died was a 52-year-old man. Seven of the injured remained in hospitals Thursday, five in critical condition, spokeswomen said.

Rialto police Det. Sgt. Reinhard Burkholder said Thursday that Ressa was wanted for questioning in the assault on his 54-year-old mother.

"He punched her numerous times in the face and choked her into unconsciousness and stood over her with a butcher knife," Burkholder said.

Ressa may have been under the influence of methamphetamine, Burkholder said.

He was not being pursued by officers when he crashed in Las Vegas, police said.

09-22-05, 07:41 PM
Recent reports state that it is now 2 dead (the second dies a few hours ago). The injured were all tourists (reported so far), including a newlywed couple.

It was insanity yesterday when this happened.

We were on Flamingo, heading to the Strip for dinner at Paris Buffet, when the traffic came to a standstill at Rio. This was about 15 minutes after it happened.

It took about 1/2 hour to cross the Strip (LV Blvd was closed both directions for quite a while), and we ended up valeting at Bally's instead.

09-23-05, 01:13 PM
Yikes! I was just there last week. Glad I missed this.

09-26-05, 06:55 PM
I was AT Bally's when this happened. Actually, to be precise, my wife and I were driving down the strip (from the Stratosphere) immediatly after it happened. As we were pulling into the parking lot, a stream of police cars and ambulances were screaming by. I suspect if we'd been two minutes ahead of schedule, we would have been AT the intersection when it happened. If we'd decided to just walk around instead of checking out the north-strip casinos, we could easily have been among the victims. It was right where we would walk to get back into Bally's.

Our room looked directly down over the perp's car - smashed against the end of a cement fence-type thing that leads peds into the overpass that heads across the street (to Barbary Coast). From the room, we saw all of the after-work - police photographers, forensics dudes, the whole bit. The strip was closed between north of Flamingo Rd. and Tropicana Rd. for about 5-6 hours - was a total mess.

09-29-05, 12:31 PM
I was taking a nap at the Flamingo when all the sirens woke me up. Crazy shit.

09-29-05, 12:41 PM
The third person has died from this now.

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