A suspected drunk driver fleeing from police has killed two people and injured at least 23 as he plowed his vehicle into a crowd that were coming out of a concert as part of the SXSW festival in Austin, Texas. According to USA Today on March 13, the man flew down the street at a high rate of speed hitting and killing a male and female riding on a moped and injuring many others.
The incident happened outside the Mohawk in the downtown area of Austin early Thursday morning. The two riders have been confirmed dead while 23 others were injured and taken to the hospital. Officials say that five of those people are in critical condition.
The driver sped away from police when they tried to pull him over at a gas station. He then drove his car the wrong way down a one-way street and turned onto Red River, which is the street where crowds of people had just been enjoying a SXSW concert a few minutes before. In addition to hitting the moped, he also slammed into a van and a taxi before trying to get away on foot. Police confirmed that they had to use a stun gun to stop him. He is now in custody and faces two counts of capital murder.
Thousands of people have been attending the South by Southwest festival which runs through March 16. No one expected something like this to happen as medical personnel and even bystanders rushed to help those that had been hurt.
"There is only one person responsible for this, someone with no regard for the sanctity of life,” Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo told reporters. "Our focus is on gathering evidence and seeking justice for the people who lost their lives."
In a split second, this man’s wrong choice to flee police to get out of a DUI charge has turned into murder charges instead and most importantly, he was responsible for two people losing their lives.