The Latest: Paris police: Attacker probably dead

Police officers seal off the access to the Champs Elysees avenue in Paris, France, Monday, June 19, 2017. Paris officials say : Suspected attacker ‘downed’ after driving into police car on Champs-Elysees. (AP Photo/Bertrand Combaldieu)

PARIS (AP) — The Latest on Paris security operation on Champs-Elysees (all times local):

4:55 p.m.

A French security official says that the attacker on Champs-Elysees avenue is probably dead and the bomb squad is on the scene.

Interior Ministry spokesman Pierre-Henry Brandet says the driver whose car exploded as he tried to ram a police vehicle is “most probably” dead.

Brandet said bomb squads were still securing the scene. He said the attacker appeared to have acted deliberately.


4:45 p.m.

France’s anti-terrorism prosecutor has opened an investigation into the ramming of a police vehicle on Paris’ Champs-Elysees avenue.

Authorities say a driver has rammed his car into a police vehicle in the Champs-Elysees shopping district. They say he has been arrested after being injured in a subsequent apparent clash with police.


4:30 p.m.

The French national gendarmerie service says the driver of a car that rammed a law enforcement vehicle has been arrested.

The tweet Monday confirmed an attack had taken place on Paris’ famed Champs-Elysees.

Police had earlier warned people to avoid the neighborhood, one of the French capital’s most popular with tourists. Paris police said neither gendarmes nor passers-by were injured.


4:25 p.m.

Two French police officials have told The Associated Press that a suspected attacker drove into a police vehicle on the Champs-Elysees shopping district in Paris, and is now lying on the ground immobilized.

It is unclear the attacker has been killed or why he drove into the police Monday. The officials weren’t authorized to be publicly named.

The suspect is wearing a white shirt and dark shorts and prone on his stomach on the avenue.

Police ringed the area as tourists and other onlookers gathered.

–By Elaine Ganley and Lori Hinnant


4:20 p.m.

Paris police say a security operation is underway in the Champs-Elysees shopping district and are urging people to avoid the area.

The police department tweeted the warning Monday without providing further details. The high-end neighborhood is popular with tourists.

The reason for the operation remains unclear.

A subway station in the area is closed.

An attacker defending the Islamic State group shot and killed a police officer on the Champs-Elysees in April, days before a presidential election, prompting an extensive security operation. France is under a state of emergency after a string of deadly Islamic extremist attacks.