Pilbara Attack: Australian police shoot man dead after stabbings in Pilbara

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Police in Western Australia have shot dead a man after several people were stabbed at a shopping centre in the Pilbara region.

Five people were injured in the attack at the South Hedland Square centre – two of them are in a serious condition.

Witnesses told local media they saw a man waving “a great big knife” at shoppers and police officers, before hearing screaming and bangs.

WA Premier Mark McGowan called it “a tragic and awful set of events”.

“He has been tasered by police, that didn’t stop him. He lunged at police officers and then he was shot by police officers,” the Australian Broadcasting Corporation quoted Mr McGowan as saying.

Police said there was no ongoing threat to public safety and are appealing for people to come forward with any video evidence. There has been no suggestion the incident was terror-related.

The attack happened around 10:00 local time on Friday (02:00 GMT). One woman told ABC she fled after encountering the man outside the shopping centre’s entrance.

“I saw this guy swinging a great big knife at this lady who had a toddler in the trolley,” Shelley Farquhar said.

“Then he gave up on her and came in, because I was there, and was swinging at me.”

Pilbara District Police confirmed the man who died was a “person who was engaged by police, and he received a gunshot wound”.

“Police will investigate the circumstances surrounding how these people received the injuries,” it said in a statement.

South Hedland is a small town in the rural Pilbara region of Western Australia. Most people in the area work in mining and related industries.

The dead man, who has not been identified, was reported by several witnesses to have been wearing a high-vis jacket.

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