Terrorist attacker killed man as he ran amok with knife after leaping from car
A KNIFE-WIELDING man has stabbed two people, one fatally, in Melbourne in an attack believed to be linked to terrorism, police said.
The attack during the afternoon rush hour brought the centre of Australia’s second largest city to a standstill.
Police said the man got out of a vehicle, which then caught fire, and attacked three bystanders with a knife before being shot by police.
The suspect died later in hospital. One of the victims also died and the two others were admitted to hospital.
Victoria Police Commissioner Graham Ashton said the suspect, originally from Somalia, was known to police and the incident is being treated as terrorism.
Superintendent David Clayton said police responded to reports of a burning vehicle.
Officers were confronted near the burning car by a man “brandishing a knife and threatening them” while passers-by called out that people had been stabbed, he said.
One witness said one of the stabbing victims, believed to be a man in his 60s who later died, was stabbed in the face.
A bomb squad made the scene safe. Officers said the car contained several barbecue gas cylinders.
Victoria Police tweeted a request for witnesses to speak to police and share any images that might help the investigation.
Victoria state premier Daniel Andrews said the attack was “an evil and terrifying thing that has happened in our city and state today”.
Mr Ashton added: “From what we know of that individual we are treating this as a terrorism incident,” adding that the police counter-terrorism command was working on the case as well as homicide detectives.
“He’s known to police mainly in respect to relatives that he has which certainly are persons of interest to us, and he’s someone that accordingly is know to both Victorian police and the federal intelligence authorities.”