HAVERSTRAW, N.Y. – Police said a raging driver had left his car in a family of eight, including a baby and five children, outside a Rockland County store Wednesday, killing a 32-year-old woman and injuring several others.
Police believe that a dispute between the family and the driver, identified as Jason Mendez, 35, of Washingtonville, may have precipitated the afternoon attack in a store 7 -Eleven to Haverstraw.
Police said the driver had hit the eight family members and had crashed into the storefront before he overturned the vehicle and hit the road again, hitting the family a second time.
All members of the family were hospitalized. The woman was later pronounced dead. The police did not reveal his name. A 35-year-old man and six children, including a 2-year-old child, were treated for life-threatening injuries.
The Mendez, armed with a knife, was arrested at the scene after police used a stun gun to control him.
"At first he said nothing to the police," said police captain Martin Lund of Haverstraw Police. "He refused to drop the knife, then he was caught off guard and shot."
Mendez pleaded not guilty to his indictment for murder and attempted murder on Wednesday night. It was unclear whether he had a lawyer who could comment on the charges.