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Officials believe deadly Pride parade crash is a tragic accident

Pride Parade Crash
Posted at 2:10 PM, Jun 20, 2021

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Officials in Florida say a deadly crash in a Pride parade was a tragic accident.

The 77-year-old driver was one of the lead vehicles in the Wilton Manors Stonewall Pride Parade. The driver was participating in the event and was in the truck because physical ailments kept him from walking, according to Fort Lauderdale police.

The driver and two victims were part of the Fort Lauderdale Gay Men's Chorus.

Investigators say he unintentionally slammed into spectators at the start of Saturday's parade in the Fort Lauderdale area.

"As the vehicle began to move forward in anticipation for the start of the parade, the vehicle accelerated unexpectedly, striking two pedestrians. After striking the pedestrians, the driver continued across all lanes of traffic, ultimately crashing into the fence of a business on the west side of the street," the police release states.

The driver stayed at the crash scene and is cooperating with investigators, they said.

One person was killed and another was seriously injured.

Initially, there was speculation the crash was a hate crime directed at the gay community, given the event where it happened.

Sunday morning, Wilton Manors Vice Mayor Paul Rolli said the investigation so far shows it was an accident.

No charges have been filed at this time, and the investigation is ongoing.