One man was killed and three police officers injured after a woman was taken hostage by an apparently pro-ISIS attacker at an apartment complex in the beachside community of Brighton, South Australia last night. The suspect was subsequently put down by police who ended the incident.
The attack began around 4:00pm local time and the woman was held hostage for approximately two hours after police arrived on the scene. During that time the attacker — who was apparently known to counter-terrorism authorities, BNO News reports — called in to the news room of 7News Melbourne saying, “This is for IS, this is for al-Qaeda,” as the hostage could be heard screaming in the background. Police began an operation to save the victim around 6:00pm, when gunfire was heard in the building.
“A man has been shot dead by police in the Bay Street apartment complex,” Victoria Police said in a brief, emailed statement. “Police have safely rescued a woman who was being held against her will in the apartment block,” according to BNO News.
The police also found an unidentified man dead of a gunshot wound when they entered the apartment complex.
Authorities are currently “investigating whether the incident is terror-related and counter-terror investigators were on the scene last night,” reports the Sydney Morning Herald. They are also investigating the relationship between the attacker and the as yet-unidentified female hostage, “who is aged between 20 and 30.”
Yet another attack on Westerners inspired by militant Islam? A lover’s quarrel that turned violent? Some combination of the two? In any event, the attacker does indeed appear to be a loser in every sense of the word.
Coincidentally, Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis was in Australia yesterday and made these comments concerning the Islam-inspired attacks in London this weekend, but which may have added relevance for Australians today:
[W]e are united…in our resolve, even against an enemy that thinks that by hurting us, they can scare us.
Well, we don’t scare. And so we’re here to work together in a manner that protects the freedom and the values that we share together and we’re committed to passing those freedoms onto the next generation intact.