The Islamic State claimed responsibility for the truck rampage in New York City that left eight people dead. It did not provide any evidence for the claim, USA Today reports. The terrorist group referred to the suspected attacker, Uzbekistan national Sayfullo Saipov, 29, as a “soldier of the Caliphate.” The comments were published in the group’s weekly al-Naba newspaper. Investigators believe Saipov most likely acted alone when he planned and carried out Tuesday’s carnage that also wounded 12. He appears to have been heavily influenced by the group’s ideology and methods.
The Islamic State has repeatedly urged its followers to use vehicles in terrorist attacks. Authorities said Saipov meticulously planned the assault and left notes proclaiming that the “Islamic State would endure forever.” Scores of Islamic State propaganda videos were found on his phones. Saipov is being held without bail. He did not enter a plea to terror charges. He was shot by police after the attack but is expected to survive. Saipov told investigators after his capture that he “felt good” about what he had done, even asking to hang an Islamic State flag in his hospital room. Neighbors in the U.S. and Uzbekistan have described Saipov as calm, quiet and mysterious. He is married with three children. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Saipov was “radicalized domestically,” a scenario investigators are probing.