Four stabbed after random attack in Auckland New Zealand
Police reported no evidence of a hate crime.
Four persons were stabbed in what police characterized as a "random" knife assault on Auckland's North Shore in New Zealand.
According to witness accounts and police records, the suspected assailant was pursued and caught by construction workers, one of whom was on crutches.
New Zealand is seeing a spike in crime rates following the pandemic, and according to police statistics by RNZ, violent crime rates in Auckland, the country's largest city, were up 30% from pre-pandemic levels and stayed stable compared to the previous year — despite months of lockdown keeping people home.
During a media briefing, Waitematā District Commander superintendent Naila Hassan praised the members of the public for their bravery, emphasizing that “It absolutely could have been a lot worse and that’s why I really need to acknowledge the bravery of those members of the public.”
She also stated that there was no evidence of a hate crime, with victims being of all genders, nationalities, and ages.
Police described it as a "random attack" that did not appear to be premeditated.
According to authorities, the suspected assailant was hurt and was being treated at a hospital.
Hassan stressed that "This was an extremely fast-moving incident where our police staff responded quickly … I want to acknowledge the traumatic event this would have been for the victims.”
According to a lady who saw the event, one of the construction workers used his crutches to stop the suspect. At the scene, a big knife and a broken crutch were photographed lying on the road.
Melanie Sharma-Barrow, who lives in Murray's Bay, just a few minutes from the scene of the incident, reported her street had been closed off. “Everyone is just shocked,” she said. “This is a seriously safe community … That Murrays Bay spot where the stabbing happened … is seen as such a safe place.”
According to Sharma-Barrow, the area where the incident occurred was "a hub for children. The kids go down there and jump off the pier, the ice-cream van goes there – on a different date the destruction could have been massive.”