WILTON MANORS, Florida—A driver slammed into spectators Saturday evening at the start of a Pride parade in South Florida, killing one man and seriously injuring another, authorities said.
The driver and the victims were a part of the Fort Lauderdale Gay Men’s Chorus family, according to a statement reported by news outlets from the group’s president, Justin Knight.
“To my knowledge, it was an accident. This was not an attack on the LGBTQ community,” Knight said in the statement. “We anticipate more details to follow and ask for the community’s love and support.”
The collision happened during the Wilton Manors Stonewall Pride Parade. Wilton Manors is just north of Fort Lauderdale.
In the immediate aftermath of the crash, Fort Lauderdale Mayor Dean Trantalis had said he believed the crash was “deliberate.” Some other witnesses had also told local media that they believed the crash appeared to be an intentional act.
Fort Lauderdale Police Detective Ali Adamson told reporters at the time that authorities were investigating all possibilities.
Spectator Christina Currie had told the South Florida SunSentinel that she was with her family at the start of the parade.
“All of a sudden there was a loud revving of a truck and a crash through a fence,” Currie said. “It was definitely an intentional act right across the lanes of traffic.”
Trantalis said a driver of a pickup truck suddenly accelerated when he was told he was next in the parade, crashing into the victims, according to WSVN-TV.
Police said the driver was taken into custody but it was unclear whether he had been charged.
Photos and video from the scene showed Democratic U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz in tears while in a convertible at the parade.
In a statement Saturday night, Wasserman Schultz said she was safe but “deeply shaken and devastated that a life was lost.”
“I am so heartbroken by what took place at this celebration,” she said. “May the memory of the life lost be for a blessing.”
Wilton Manors police tweeted Saturday night that the public is not in danger.