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Sydney knife attacker had mental health issues, ideology not motive: Police – Times of India

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NEW DELHI: Police in Sydney have revealed that the man responsible for the fatal stabbing of six individuals had a history of mental health issues. Authorities clarified that there was no indication of any ideological motive behind the attack at a busy shopping centre in the city. The attacker, identified as 40-year-old Joel Cauchi, was known to police in Queensland, and his family contacted authorities after recognizing him in news reports following the incident.
Queensland Police Assistant Commissioner Roger Lowe said, “The family when they viewed footage of the event on TV thought that may well have been their son and they reached out to authorities.”
Witnesses recounted how Cauchi, dressed in shorts and an Australian national rugby league jersey, ran through the Westfield Bondi Junction mall wielding a knife. He tragically stabbed six people and injured at least 12 before being shot dead by Inspector Amy Scott, who bravely confronted him alone during the rampage. Some mall-goers tried to intervene, while others sought refuge in closed shops.
“This was a terrible scene,” expressed New South Wales Police Assistant Commissioner Anthony Cooke. “There is still to this point, nothing that we have, no information we received, no evidence we have recovered or intelligence that we have gathered that would suggest that this was driven by any particular motivation, ideology or otherwise,” Cooke added.
Cauchi had a history of mental health issues since the age of 17 and had frequent contact with the police in recent years, as confirmed by Queensland police officer Lowe. He led a transient lifestyle, often sleeping in his car and maintaining sporadic communication with his mother via text messages.
The rare nature of such attacks in Australia, a country with stringent gun and knife laws, has left the community in shock. Five of the victims were women, and the male victim was a security guard at the shopping centre.
Among those injured was a nine-month-old baby, in serious but stable condition, whose mother tragically succumbed to her injuries in the hospital. A large police presence was observed at the mall, which remained closed to the public, with tributes for the victims steadily growing.
“The individual stories of those who have been killed, the complete strangers rushing in to help as well as acts of courage and bravery mean that – whether you know the individuals who have been killed or not – you’re grieving today,” said New South Wales state Premier Chris Minns.
“The entire state will get behind those families in the days ahead as they recover and go through the inevitable grief of such a horrifying event.”
Messages of condolence poured in from around the world, acknowledging the bravery of ordinary citizens who risked their safety to assist others.





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