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Death toll at 11 in China vehicle attack, 44 in hospital

BEIJING — Authorities say the death toll has risen to 11 with another 44 people hospitalized after a man allegedly drove an SUV deliberately into a crowd in central China before jumping out and attacking victims with a dagger and shovel.

The Hengyang city government said Thursday the suspect in the case had previous convictions for crimes including drug trafficking, theft and assault and, acting alone, had sought to “get revenge on society.”

That appeared to rule out terrorism, although vehicles have previously been used in attacks blamed on militant Muslim separatists from the Uighur ethnic minority group.

Police identified the suspect as 54-year-old Yang Zanyun from Hengyang’s Hengdong county.

The victims in Tuesday night’s attack had been gathered in a public square when the SUV appeared apparently without warning.