Las Vegas investigators have found no evidence that the woman who ran over dozens of tourists Sunday shouted an Islamic message while driving down a crowded sidewalk, contrary to viral online reports.
The reports quote an unnamed witness claiming to have heard Lakeisha Holloway, 24, shouting Allahu Akbar as she veered off Las Vegas Boulevard and onto the sidewalk in the front of Planet Hollywood and Paris hotels. One woman was killed and 26 other pediestrians were injured.
The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police spokesman tweeted Monday that there was "zero evidence that was shouted as it did not happen."
Lakeisha Holloway had been living on the streets with her daughter inside her 1996 Oldsmobile for a least a week, police said. While police say it was apparently an intentional attack on the tourists with the car, it was not an act or terrorism.
Deputy Chief Zimmerman: This was not an act of terrorism. Initial investigation appears this was intentional. pic.twitter.com/EPxJnmUWdk
-- LVMPD (@LVMPD) December 21, 2015
Still, the false reports and rumors of an Islamic terror connection are being spread, especially on websites and social network accounts that oppose restrictions on gun rights advocated after recent terror attacks involving firearms.
When the story comes out u watch this woman ran over these ppl in Las Vegas bc she hates whites or she loves Islam pic.twitter.com/EBhbuqsH7E
-- RJ Mansfield (@DebtAssassin) December 22, 2015
The apparent circumstances that preceded this attack, however, suggest that it could be more relevant to a debate about homelessness. While Holloway did not explain why she drove onto the sidewalk, she did describe to investigators the difficulties of living in her car with a small child.
"She described a stressful period of time today where she was trying to rest/sleep inside her vehicle with her daughter by kept getting run off by security of the properties she stopped at. She ended up on the strip," the police report said. "She would not explain why she drove onto the sidewalk but remembered a body bouncing off of her windshield, breaking it."