Investigation Reveals More Details About Driver Involved In Deadly New York Truck Attackby Jana Ritter - Published: 11/01/2017
More information is being released about the man behind the latest truck involved terrorist attack that killed 8 people and seriously injured 11 in New York City on Tuesday. Sayfullo Saipov (29) is accused of driving a rented pick-up truck through a busy bike path near the World Trade Center memorial and mowing down pedestrians and cyclists before crashing into a school a bus. He then jumped out of the truck carrying what turned out to be fake guns in each hand and was shot in the abdomen by police then taken into custody.
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The investigation has since revealed that Saipov legally immigrated to the United States from Uzbekistan in 2010 and began working as a commercial truck driver in Ohio. Records also show he had established a pair of businesses in Ohio – one called Sayf Motors Inc., listing the address of a friend near Cincinnati he had stayed with for a few weeks after he first arrived. The second business, Bright Auto LLC, used a second address located near Cleveland. Authorities also found Saipov listed on a trucking industry website linked to a Paterson, New Jersey, address where they searched on Tuesday night. They also found court records revealing that Saipov had also incurred a few trucking-related infractions, which caused him to lose his insurance and ultimately his job.
Dilnoza Abdusamatova, the friend Saipov had stayed with in Ohio and also a fellow truck driver, has spoke to several media outlets saying he remembers Saipov always being "really calm" and a hard worker. "He always used to work. He wouldn't go to parties or anything. He only used to come home and rest and leave and go back to work," Abdusamatova said. Another fellow Uzbeck immigrant has described Saipov as quiet, hardworking and friendly, and was shocked that he was involved in the attack. "He did not seem like a terrorist. He is a very good guy," the friend said.
However, another Ohio truck driver who also knew Saipov has come forward with his own observations of how Saipov eventually changed. According to Mirrakhmat Muminov, Saipov didn't seem to be very religious when he first arrived in the United States but became increasingly more religious over time. He started praying more and going to the mosque more often and things became worse when Saipov lost his truck insurance and companies were no longer hiring him for jobs. "He seemed to harbor radical views and saw his work life spiraling down," Muminov said. He also noticed Saipov becoming "a little aggressive" and seemed “depressed” and "unhappy to be alive" before he left for New Jersey to get work.
On Tuesday evening following the attack, it was confirmed that Saipov has been working as an Uber driver for the past six months and was hired after passing the company's legal background check. Investigators believe Saipov was radicalized in the US and had been planning the attack for weeks “in the name of ISIS.” Several witnesses reported hearing him shouting “Allahu Akbar” as he emerged from his truck after the attack and police also found notes inside the vehicle handwritten in Arabic saying, “The Islamic State will endure forever.”
While ISIS has yet to claim responsibility for the attack, it closely follows instructions issued in a recent ISIS publication ordering their followers “to use a truck to crush people and to leave notes at the scene which make his allegiance to ISIS known.”