Driver arrested after multiple people, including children, struck by car in Montreal North

A driver has been arrested after police say he struck as many as nine people in Montreal North (photo Joe Santamaria)

By Amy Luft, CTV Montreal

A 38-year-old driver is under arrest after police say he struck as many as nine pedestrians in Montreal North on Wednesday around midday.

Montreal police say the incident began when a car struck a first pedestrian at 12:45 p.m. at the corner of Langelier Blvd. and De Dijon St.

The driver fled the scene, said Montreal police spokesperson Manuel Couture.

He then ended his run on a sidewalk, striking up to eight people – six adults and two children – at the nearby corner of Valade Ave. and De Dijon.

Couture said all of the victims were transported to hospital and are expected to survive their injuries.

SUSPECT APPEARED CONFUSED: POLICE

The driver was arrested and investigators are meeting with him, said Couture.

"He was not speeding and he was not going so fast, but at one moment he just got on the sidewalk," said Couture. "What the investigators want to know so far is if the suspect was in crisis while he was driving the car, if he was in contact with reality and if he knew what he was doing. Was he targeting people or was he just confused behind his wheel?"

"I don't have anything saying to me he was intoxicated, not by alcohol nor by drugs," said Couture of the investigation so far.

"The investigation is just beginning," he said, adding that police are speaking with witnesses, the suspects and are looking for any possible footage from the incident.

Couture said the suspect looked confused when he was arrested.

"We have to talk to the family of the suspect to know how he was doing in the last few days," he added.

Investigators are also looking into the car to determine is there were any mechanical issues that could have played a role.

STUDENTS WITNESSED THE CRASH

Some students at a nearby high school reportedly watched the incident unfold, and their principal wrote an email to parents advising them that counsellors and trauma experts were available.

"Today, during the lunch hour a car accident occurred near our school," wrote Tony Pita, the principal of Lester B. Pearson High School, which is a block away from the corner in question.

"Some of our students may have witnessed the event where several individuals were hurt," he said.

"None of our students were directly involved in the accident."

If any students needed help processing what they saw, he wrote, staff were on site to help.

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