Federal prosecutors have released dramatic new footage showing the moments before New York City truck attack driver Sayfullo Saipov was shot by responding officers after allegedly killing eight people along a bike path in 2017.
The release comes as a federal trial is underway for Saipov, an Uzbekistan native who prosecutors say was inspired by the Islamic State terrorist group.
Saipov, who was 29 at the time of the attack, has pleaded not guilty to multiple charges of murder, but he could face the death penalty if convicted.
In one of the new video clips, Saipov is seen holding what appeared to be two pistols before multiple shots rang out and he tumbled to the ground.
In another, police officers are seen standing over his body after he was struck.
Saipov’s attack is being treated as an act of terrorism, and prosecutors say they found multiple notes, written in Arabic, in and near the Home Depot rental vehicle used in the attack, indicating that Saipov had pledged his loyalty to ISIS. Saipov is the first person to face federal charges that could result in the death penalty under President Biden’s administration.
Eight people were left dead and 12 others injured following the 2017 attack, which took place near the World Trade Center in Lower Manhattan. Of the eight killed, six were tourists from foreign countries, including five from Argentina and one from Belgium.
The Justice Department said that year that a grand jury indictment charged Saipov with “eight counts of murder in aid of racketeering, twelve counts of attempted murder in aid of racketeering, one count of providing and attempting to provide material support to the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham and one count of violence and destruction of a motor vehicle resulting in death.”
Assistant U.S. Attorney Alexander Li said in his opening statement last week at Saipov’s trial that Saipov “brought two fake firearms, which looked real” to the scene of the attack, according to the New York Post.
“He grabbed them, and he burst out of the truck screaming ‘Allahu Akbar,’ a celebratory phrase that other ISIS members have also used when conducting terrorist attacks,” Li reportedly said. “A responding NYPD officer ran towards the defendant. The defendant aimed his apparent guns at the officer. The officer fired, hitting the defendant, who went down to the ground.”
Fox News’ Anders Hagstrom contributed to this report.