The man suspected of killing eight people in a terror attack in New York City on Tuesday may have done multiple practice runs before he slammed into pedestrians on a bike path in Lower Manhattan.
Law enforcement officials reportedly told the New York Post that Sayfullo Saipov, 29, had used his E-Z Pass to cross the Holland Tunnel twice before Tuesday’s attack. His car was also seen on the George Washington Bridge three days before the massacre.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, John Miller, New York’s deputy commissioner of intelligence and counterterrorism, said in a news conference Wednesday that Saipov’s attack was carefully planned.
“It appears that Mr. Saipov had been planning this for a number of weeks. He did this in the name of ISIS,” Miller said.
“He appears to have followed, almost exactly to a T, the instructions that ISIS has put out in its social media channels before with instructions to its followers on how to carry out such an attack.”
Saipov came to the United States in 2010 and now lives in Paterson, New Jersey. One of his neighbors there told the New York Post that he had seen Saipov driving that truck around with two or three other people.
“I haven’t seen them since [the incident],” Carlos Batista told the newspaper.
“They need to look for those people, question those people, because they’d be with him every day. They’d know what he’s thinking.”
Sources familiar with the investigation told the New York Post that Saipav had multiple phone conversations in the days leading up to the attack with people in New Jersey and in Florida, where he previously lived.
Investigators are reportedly attempting to locate those people for questioning.
[Feature photo: Police handout]