A knife-wielding man has crashed a car on Melbourne’s Bourke Street Mall then set it on fire, stabbed a shopper to death, and injured two others before being shot by police.
The alleged attacker was rushed to hospital with a neck injury and at least two bystanders were injured, with a body seen lying in the street nearby, covered with a white sheet.
Witnesses said the car hit a pedestrian as it mounted the kerb and burst into flames outside Target near the Swanson Street intersection about 4.20pm on Friday.
Multiple witnesses said the driver of what appeared to be a Holden Colorado then attacked police with a knife and may have stabbed a security guard.
Video shot from the scene showed the man wielding a knife attempting to stab and slash at two police officers before he was shot in the neck and fell to the ground.
In the aftermath what appeared to be a body was lying on the road covered in a white sheet
Video showed a man wielding a knife attempt to stab and slash at two police officers before he was shot with a taser and fell to the ground, and also a brave shopper try to hit him with a trolley
As the police scuffled with the man, a brave shopper tried to knock him over with a shopping trolley while others called on police to shoot the assailant.
Victoria Police said officers responded to reports of a car fire before they were confronted by the man.
‘A man was arrested at the scene and has been taken to hospital under police guard in a critical condition,’ they said.
‘Police are not looking for anyone further at this early stage. A small number of people are being treated for stab wounds.’
‘The exact circumstances are yet to be determined at this stage. The area has been cordoned off and the public are urged to avoid the area.’
Ambulance Victoria said a man was taken to hospital in a critical condition with a neck injury and two others with unknown injuries.
A car has crashed on Melbourne ‘s Bourke Street Mall and burst into flames
Photos form the scene showed the Holden Colorado burning on the pavement
Witnesses described a chaotic scene with an injured pedestrian lying on the ground, and numerous police cars helicopters flying overhead.
‘Police response was swift and overwhelming. I heard at least one gunshot initially,’ one said.
Another said they heard ‘what sounded like a bomb and gun shot’.
‘Hopefully no one got hurt. Roads are blocked and police advising to stay away from Bourkest. Feels like de ja vu,’ they said.
Panicked pedestrians ran in all directions away from the scene, some hiding in nearby cafes and shops, locking themselves in back rooms.
Witnesses said the car hit a pedestrian as it mounted the kerb outside Target near the Swanson Street intersection about 4.20pm on Friday
Police are asking people to avoid the area and said more information would be given when it was available
Another said they heard ‘what sounded like a bomb and gun shot’
The fire was brought under control within about five minutes, a Metropolitan Fire Brigade spokeswoman said.
Police are asking people to avoid the area and said more information would be given when it was available.
It comes as a trial continues into the horrifying rampage in Bourke St in January last year.
James Gargasoulas is accused of deliberately crashing into pedestrians, killing six and injuring 27 others.
The fire was brought under control within about five minutes, a Metropolitan Fire Brigade spokeswoman said
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