WELLINGTON – A man wounded four people in a stabbing rampage stopped by bystanders who brought him to the ground in a New Zealand city neighborhood Thursday, police said.
Police District Commander Naila Hassan said the attack in Auckland was random and the suspect was in custody. She said there was no indication the attack was a hate crime, as the victims were of different genders, ethnicities and ages.
“This was an extremely fast-moving incident, where our police staff responded quickly, apprehended the offender and prevented further harm to our communities,” Hassan said.
She said the victims all suffered moderate injuries.
People in the neighborhood began following and surrounding the man after he began his attack and one brought him down using a walking crutch, Hassan said.
“Members of the public acted with extreme bravery,” she said.
She said the man had been carrying a large knife and suffered moderate injuries when he was apprehended, and had been hospitalized as a result.
She said the attack, which began in the suburb of Murrays Bay, lasted less than 10 minutes.
New Zealand was the site of two violent stabbing rampages at supermarkets last year. One was considered a terror attack while a judge found no motive for the other attack.
Last September, a Muslim extremist inspired by the Islamic State group stabbed five people in an Auckland supermarket before police shot and killed him. Three of those he stabbed were critically injured and two other people were also injured in the melee, but all survived.
And in May last year, shoppers and staff at a Dunedin supermarket managed to stop a frenzied man from hurting others after he stabbed four people in a random attack, severely wounding three of them.
The Dunedin attacker, 43-year-old Luke Lambert, was convicted on four counts of attempted murder and sentenced to 13 years in prison.