LAS VEGAS – The man accused of deliberately crashing into a crowd on the Las Vegas Strip (search), killing two people, had been wanted by police just days earlier for questioning in a near-fatal assault on his mother.
Stephen M. Ressa (search), 27, of Rialto, Calif., faces charges of murder and attempted murder in Wednesday's crash. He was arrested at the scene and was being held without bail.
One witness described seeing "humans being mowed down like a lawnmower," Deputy Police Chief Greg McCurdy said Thursday. "It appears he did this intentionally."
There was no record that Ressa had retained a lawyer.
A dozen people were struck in the crash in front of the Bally's (search) and Paris hotel-casinos; six remained hospitalized Thursday. Gordon Kusayanagi, 52, of Hollister, Calif., died Wednesday; Mark Modaressi, 26, of Irvine, Calif., died Thursday.
During interviews with detectives, Ressa appeared lucid and correctly answered questions about his ability to determine right and wrong, McCurdy said. But Ressa's statements were "bizarre in nature," McCurdy said.
Rialto police Detective Sgt. Reinhard Burkholder said Ressa was wanted for questioning in an assault on his 54-year-old mother. He had not been charged in that case.
"He punched her numerous times in the face and choked her into unconsciousness and stood over her with a butcher knife," Burkholder said.
Results of alcohol and drug tests were pending.