Man stabbed to death in Melbourne attack
MELBOURNE: One person has been stabbed to death on a busy central Melbourne street where a knifewielding man was left in a critical condition after being shot by police.
Two other people are in hospital after being stabbed in Bourke St yesterday afternoon.
‘‘Three people have been stabbed. Unfortunately, one is deceased at the scene; two other victims are currently in hospital,’’ police Superintendent David Clayton told reporters at the scene.
Photographs show a white sheet covering a body, with a bare foot protruding.
One witness said a man was stabbed in the face.
Footage from the scene shows a man swinging a knife at two uniformed officers near a burning car before he was shot.
‘‘[Officers] were confronted by a male brandishing a knife and threatening them,’’ Supt Clayton said.
‘‘At the same time, passersby were calling out that members of the public had been stabbed. Police shot the male in the chest and he is now in a critical condition under guard in hospital.’’
Police are not looking for anyone else.
‘‘There’s no known link to terrorism at this stage. We’ll keep an open mind as to whether there’s any link. It’s very early in the stages of the investigation,’’ Supt Clayton said.
Police initially responded to reports of a vehicle on fire at the corner of Bourke and Swanston streets. The fire in the dualcab Rodeo ute was quickly extinguished.
Markel Villasin (22) was finishing his shift at KFC in Bourke St as the drama unfolded.
‘‘Me and the managers ran out and that’s when we saw the car on fire and then we saw the guy on the floor and we wanted to help. There were two blokes helping him out already; he was face down, pools of blood around his face,’’ he said.
‘‘I’m pretty sure he got stabbed in the face.
‘‘Because he was on his stomach, they turned him over to see if he’s all right. He was still alive.’’
Bystander Drew Hair said he was walking in Swanston St when he heard an explosion.
The next thing he saw was a ‘‘big dude punching into the police car’’.
Mr Hair said the assailant was dressed in Islamic clothing and of African appearance and about 1.93m tall.
‘‘The cops were trying to hit him with batons and he wasn’t going down.’’ — AAP