Bourke St knifeman dead after stabbing leaves 1 dead, car fire



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The Islamist group says one of its fighters carried out a knife attack in Melbourne, in which one man died and two were injured.

The group's news site, Amaq, provided no evidence for the claim.

"He who carried out the collision and drilling operation in Melbourne … is one of the fighters of the Islamic State and executed the operation in response to a call to attack the citizens of the coalition," Amaq said on Friday. .

The text referred to an August appeal by the leader of the Islamic State, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, to "use bombs, knives or cars to carry out attacks" in countries participating in the US-led coalition that ended the caliphate he he said. in 2014, in parts of Iraq and Syria.

The attacker in Melbourne was shot by police after he set fire to a gas-laden truck in central Melbourne and stabbed three people, killing one. The bomber later died in the hospital.

Police are now addressing the stabbing attack at Bourke St in Melbourne as an incident of terrorism.

The 31-year-old Somali-born knife man born in the northwest suburbs of Melbourne died in the hospital late Friday after being shot in the chest by police.

At a news conference, Victoria's chief police commissioner, Graham Ashton, said the man who allegedly stabbed three people, killing one, was known to Victoria police and federal intelligence officials.

"We are now treating this as an incident of terrorism," he said.

Commissioner Ashton revealed that the man came from Somalia to Australia in the 1990s and had relatives known to the police from the "terrorism" point of view.

"He has family associations that are well known to us," he said.

There were some reports that the man shouted "Allahu Akbar" during the attack, but Commissioner Ashton said that this had not been confirmed.

The attacker had a record of some minor offenses, including use of cannabis, theft and traffic offenses.

The man caused chaos at Melbourne CBD on Friday afternoon after allegedly stabbing three men. One man, who has not yet been formally identified, died on the spot. Some witnesses say he was stabbed in the face.

A 26-year-old man and a 58-year-old man were taken to the hospital with life-threatening injuries.

The police also suffered minor injuries, one of them was punched and some cuts and scratches.

Police have not yet revealed the identity of the perpetrator or the other man who died.

Bourke St is blocked from Swanston St to Russell St and should remain closed until 8am on Saturday, while police investigate.

O Herald Sun is reporting that one of the men injured in the attack was Rodney Patterson and his wife Maree posted on Facebook that he was "doing well, given the circumstances."

In the light of the attack, police are making safety assessments of events taking place in Melbourne this weekend and extra police officers may be present, but the commissioner said there was no threat they were aware of.

Victorian Prime Minister Daniel Andrews condemned the incident and thanked the police and brave spectators who risked their lives to stop the knife man.

"This is a terrible and scary thing that happened in our town and state today," Andrew said.

"We condemn this. We also take this opportunity to thank the very brave and dedicated members of the Victoria Police who have made us proud in their very quick response in very dangerous circumstances. They made each and every one of us proud.

"Likewise, those strangers, people who were spectators who did not know anyone involved, who entered without hesitation, to provide support and assistance."

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said he had been informed of the incident and the state and federal agencies were working together.

"I condemn the act of terrorism in Melbourne today that tragically took the life of an Australian colleague who died as a result of this evil and cowardly attack," he said in a statement.

"Australians will never be insinuated by these terrible attacks and we will continue to live our lives and enjoy the freedoms that terrorists dislike."

HOW THE ATTACK HAS DISAPPEARED

The incident began when the man drove a 4WD in the city about 4.10pm and was set ablaze. Commissioner Ashton confirmed that there were some grille-style gas cylinders in the car that needed to be protected by the pump-response unit.

It is not clear whether the car was set on fire before or after the man left the vehicle.

According to ABC, witnesses saw the man hit the car, get out and throw an object in the car that lit it.

Commissioner Ashton said that after the car was set ablaze, the man interacted with some members of the public before the arrival of the police.

The man then punched one of the cops out the car window. Two other police officers got out of the police vehicle and tried to get him involved, but the man used a knife to try to attack them. An officer finally shot him once in the chest.

Social media footage shows a blazing ute blue and a man dressed in a black tunic and threatening white police pants with a knife. Two spectators try to help the cops stop the man, one of them rolling a shopping cart on his way.

Trolley man praised for confronting knifeman

At a previous press conference, Victoria Police Superintendent David Clayton told reporters that police were called to the scene after reports of a car ablaze. When the cops got out of the car, they were confronted by a male brandishing a knife and threatening them.

"The passersby were calling the members of the audience had been stabbed," he said.

A witness named Markel told ABC Local Radio in Melbourne that spectators asked police officers to shoot the man.

"A lot of spectators (actually) were just shouting at the cops because the cops were trying to get his knife out and arrest him, but the spectators screamed" shoot him, just shoot him "."

Ambulance Victoria said she evaluated three people at the scene, who were taken to the hospital.

One had a neck injury and was in a critical suspect condition; a second person had a head injury; and the conditions and injuries of the third person were unknown.

The police asked everyone who witnessed the incident or filmed what happened to contact them.

Markel Villasin, 22, was finishing his shift at KFC on 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 ground and we wanted to help, there were two guys helping him, he had the puddles of blood around his face," he said the AAP.

"I'm sure he got stabbed in the face.

"I really wanted to help, but I was in shock, I did not know what to do.

"Because he was face down, they handed him over to see if he's okay, he was still alive."

Viewer Drew Hair told AAP he was walking on Swanston Street when he heard an explosion.

The next thing he saw was a "big guy punching the police car."

Mr. Hair said the robber was dressed in Islamic-looking, African-looking clothes about two feet high.

"The cops were trying to hit him with batons and he was not going down," he said. Mr. Hair said that two civilians were involved, as well as two police officers, trying to stop the man from his attack.

Melbourne resident Meegan May told news.com.au that she was on a streetcar in Bourke St heading to the city when she stopped in front of Elizabeth St, about a block before the mall. She heard someone start yelling "he's got a knife."

She looked out the back window of the streetcar and noticed a burning car. There was a man and two policemen trying to calm him down.

"A moment later, I heard a loud crash; to me, it sounded like a shot, "she said.

An ambulance and about 10 police cars appeared in moments.

One man told Sky News that there appeared to be several explosions.

"There was an explosion and fire, then a second explosion and it was like a huge fireball," he said.

Reports from 3AW Radio indicate that witnesses saw the man driving the vehicle "throw something in the back", which then lit up.

A witness talking to 7 News said it looked like the car was on fire before falling and "exploding".

"I was climbing up Bourke St … and we heard this loud explosion. I thought it was a car backfiring, but there were flames coming out of the car. Then he turned to the left … and burst into flames, "the woman said.

"People were running everywhere. I thought it was like what happened last year, so I started running. Everyone started to run. It was so scary.

Anyone with information or who witnessed the incident should go to the Melbourne West police station to make a statement.

The incident comes as a test for the bustle of 2017 on Bourke Street continues.

In 2017, six people died in the car bustle that also left dozens injured.

Four adults, a child and a baby died after James "Dimitrious" Gargasoulas allegedly plowed his car on the bustling boardwalk on January 20.

The dead were three-month Zachary Matthew-Bryant, Tahlia Hakin, 10, Yosuke Kanno, 25, Jessica Mudie, 23, and Matthew Si, 33, and Bhavita Patel.

In September of that year, a man wielding knives also went into fury outside the Flinders St. station. He was kidnapped and arrested in dramatic scenes at the Melbourne CBD.

In December, there was another incident when Saeed Noori allegedly drove a car to people crossing the intersection of Flinders and Elizabeth streets.

At least 18 people, including a four-year-old boy and international tourists, were hit by the car that afternoon and one of them, 83-year-old grandfather Antonio Crocaris, died about eight days later.

If you or someone you know needs help, call Lifeline 13 11 14 or beyondblue at 1300 22 4636.

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