Two men, one of them a police officer, were killed on the spot after a knifeman attacked a supermarket and a nearby street in downtown Fuzhou. One was injured.
The assailant, wielding a 20cm-long fruit knife, hacked a man on the first floor of the Yonghui Supermarket along Xihong Road before running into the street and stabbing two bystanders in a swift attack yesterday evening, witnesses told the Southeastern Express.
Among the fatalities was a 56-year-old police officer but the identity of the other killed was unknown. One of those stabbed, a woman in her 40s, was seriously injured.
The attacker was immediately chased by two supermarket employees and a restaurant owner who saw the street stabbing.
The knifeman was able to run 50 metres away before someone threw a chair and hit him. He then tried to take out a knife but was wrestled to the ground by the mob, with his head pinned down and his hands bound behind his back.
Police arrested the 26-year-old suspect and, according to witnesses, escorted him to hospital for leg and head injuries. They are investigating his motive.
Officers arrived within minutes and cordoned off the scene in Fuzhou, one of the largest cities in Fujian province.
A string of hacking attacks have rocked the mainland in the past few months. Four assailants injured six people in an attack at the Guangzhou Railway Station earlier this month.
On March 1, 33 people, including four attackers, were killed and 140 injured by alleged Xinjiang separatists at the Kunming railway station – one of the bloodiest terror attacks in the nation. Just days after, in Changsha, Hunan province, five people were hacked to death in a residential area allegedly after a fight broke out among food stall hawkers.
The incidents have prompted the government to step up security and declare a one-year anti-terror crackdown, raiding suspected militant cells and confiscating arms and explosive materials in recent weeks.
Meanwhile, in Shenzhen, a woman faced criminal charges for allegedly spreading false reports of attacks, the Southern Metropolis News reports today.
She allegedly posted a message on a smartphone-based social media platform on Sunday about an alleged attack in Lo Wu, near the Hong Kong border. She was not present at the scene and relied on second-hand accounts.
She attached photos showing an injured person lying on the ground and another showing people gathered around the site of the incident.
“People in Shenzhen should be cautious of walking around. In this horrible environment, we’d better not go to places with crowds,” she said.
Local police explained away the “attack” as a misunderstanding. They said a man had overturned a shelf in a store and someone cried out, “There is a hacker”, triggering panic.