4 people wounded by man on stabbing rampage in New Zealand

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WELLINGTON, New Zealand — 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. Because the victims of the attack were all different sexes and age, there is no evidence that it was hate-motivated.

“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. The first attack was deemed a terrorist attack, while the judge did not find any motive.

Last September, a Muslim extremist inspired by the Islamic State group stabbed five people in an Auckland supermarket before police shot and killed him. The attack left three of the victims with serious injuries. Two other victims were injured, but they 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.

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