deadly-pride-parade-crash-was-‘tragic-accident,’-police-say

A deadly car crash at a Pride event in Florida over the weekend was unintentional and a “tragic accident,” authorities said Sunday.

Gary Blocker, police chief in Wilton Manors, where the Stonewall Pride Parade was scheduled to take place, said investigators from Fort Lauderdale and the FBI helped local police reach their conclusion.

“Today we know yesterday’s incident was a tragic accident, and not a criminal act directed at anyone, or any group of individuals,” Blocker said.

Neither the driver nor the victims have been identified, and Blocker did not provide details about what caused Saturday night’s accident, which occurred just before the event was to begin.

One person died and another was injured after a pickup truck struck them. Both the driver and the victims were connected to the Fort Lauderdale Gay Men’s Chorus, which was involved in the Pride event, according to the group’s president, Justin Knight.

Fort Lauderdale Mayor Dean Trantalis, who attended the parade, initially described the crash as a “terrorist attack on the LGBT community.” But on Sunday, Trantalis clarified that while this assertion had appeared “obvious” to him and others at the time, facts uncovered by investigators showed the crash appeared to be an accident involving a truck that “careened out of control.”

“My heart breaks for all impacted by this tragedy,” he said.

Tim Stelloh is a reporter for NBC News based in California.

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