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Breaking: Hit and Run Spree in San Francisco

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Up to 14 hurt in SF hit-and-run spree. (Hat tip: LGF readers.)

(08-29) 15:20 PDT SAN FRANCISCO — As many as 14 people were injured this afternoon by a motorist who drove around San Francisco running them down before he was arrested, authorities said.

Seven of those injured were in critical condition, police and firefighters said.

Authorities have identified the man who was arrested as Ohmeed Aziz Popal, who has an address in Ceres.

Authorities said they believe Popal was the same driver who ran over a 55-year-old man walking in a bicycle lane in Fremont, at Fremont Boulevard near Ferry Lane, just after noon. That victim died.

Popal was arrested at a Walgreens near Bush and Fillmore streets.

More at mercurynews.com: One dead, 13 hurt in apparent deliberate hit-and-run.

One man has died and at least 13 people were injured when a Fremont man purposefully drove his sport-utility vehicle onto sidewalks and crosswalks in San Francisco and Fremont today, according to San Francisco police.

The driver was in police custody. His name was not immediately released, but Department of Motor Vehicles records show the license plate on the SUV is registered to Omeed A. Popal of Fremont.

An aide to San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom who spoke on condition of anonymity because the matter was under investigation said Popal was the suspect in custody. He was injured and in stable condition, the aide said.

There may be additional victims who may have gone to the hospital without the assistance of an ambulance, San Francisco Police spokesman Neville Gittens said. Three of the people injured in San Francisco have “life-threatening injuries,” he said.

Fremont police told KCBS this afternoon that they have interviewed the suspect’s family.

The spree apparently began around noon in Fremont, where the driver hit an unidentified man walking north on Fremont Boulevard just past Decoto Road, according to Fremont police Detective Bill Veteran.

The pedestrian, a man in his 50s, was thrown into a field and pronounced dead at the scene, Fremont police said. Witnesses said the driver did not slow down.

The vehicle was going north on Fremont Boulevard just past Decoto Road when it swerved from the middle lane, veered off the street and hit a pedestrian who was walking north in the bicycle lane, Veteran said. It then continued north on Fremont without stopping.

The driver then crossed the bay into San Francisco, where he injured at least 13 people in a series of incidents spanning several neighborhoods, San Francisco police said.

The suspect drove through the Laurel Heights district which is especially busy with children during the day and allegedly hit people in four locations on California Street. Early reports said a child was injured. Those could not be confirmed by San Francisco police.

The driver allegedly hit pedestrians at at least 12 locations within San Francisco.

UPDATE at 8/29/06 6:09:18 pm:

One attack happened in front of the Jewish Community Center: SF Gate: Multimedia (image).

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 Frank says:

Gee, it's so hard to find a place to park around here.