Three people injured after car rammed into pedestrians outside mosque in London
Three people were injured after a car rammed into pedestrians outside a mosque in London, police said. Law enforcement has ruled out terrorism, but suspect it was a “hate crime.”
It happened shortly after midnight on Wednesday in the Cricklewood area of northwest London. Cricklewood is home to a number of mosques and Islamic centers.
According to the Metropolitan Police, the occupants of the car – three men and a woman in their mid-20s – “were involved in a confrontation” with people visiting a Muslim community center. The group allegedly made “comments of an Islamophobic nature.” Then the vehicle “proceeded to make off at speed” colliding with three pedestrians. They are currently being sought by police.
Ambulances were called to the scene, rushing one man aged in his 50s to hospital with serious leg injuries and transporting two others with minor injuries for further treatment. One additional person was assessed by paramedics at the scene.
“We are treating this incident very seriously and a number of enquiries are underway to trace the car and those involved,” DS Kelly Schonhage from Brent CID said.
Police say the case is “not being treated as terrorist-related,” but added that “the hate crime aspect of the collision is being looked at by detectives as an aggravating factor.”
Two of the injured were taken to the hospital, police said.
The Hussaini Association, which organized a lecture at the mosque, said on Facebook that people “were indiscriminately mown down in a suspected premeditated [Islamophobic] attack.” The driver and the passengers of the car were heard shouting “anti Islamic taunts at the crowd before they started their attack,” the association said. “We are in deep shock at such an attack.”