A 24-year-old man was arrested early Sunday in Quebec City after two people were stabbed to death and five were injured by a suspect wearing a ‘samurai garb’ and brandishing a sword.
Police were called to the historic district shortly before 10:30pm Saturday – on Halloween – and found multiple victims in at least four locations near the provincial parliament building in the capital of the French-speaking Canadian province.
At least two people died in the attack, police confirmed. Five others were rushed to nearby hospitals in serious condition.
The suspect was detained at 1am around a mile from the scene in the city’s Old Port following a two-and-a-half-hour manhunt.
Police described the attacker as wearing ‘medieval clothes’ and Radio-Canada reported that he was dressed as a samurai.
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A 24-year-old man was arrested early Sunday in Quebec City after two people were stabbed to death and five were injured by a suspect wearing a ‘samurai garb’ and brandishing a sword
Police officers search near a covered body close to the scene of the stabbing
A person is treated by an ambulance crew in an area where multiple people were stabbed near the Parliament Hill area of Quebec City
Police have not yet disclosed the suspect’s name to the public.
During a Sunday morning new conference, Quebec City Police Chief Robert Pigeon said the man doesn’t live in the Quebe City area, leading police to believe ‘he chose his victims at random.’
Pigeon added that the suspect is not associated with any terror groups and the incident is therefore not linked to the string of Islamist extremist terror attacks in France in recent weeks, including a horror knife attack at a church in Nice.
Two people have been confirmed dead and five other victims were transported to local hospital with a varying degree of injuries.
The suspect was also hospitalized after being taken into custody, police say.
‘Quebec is waking up after a night of horror. Words fail me to describe such a tragedy. I offer my condolences to the loved ones of the victims,’ wrote Quebec Premier François Legault Sunday morning on Twitter.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also tweeted his response to the attack, saying his ‘heart breaks’ for the victims and their families.
‘We’re keeping you in our thoughts and will be there for you. To all the first responders, thank you for your critical work,’ he continued.
At least two people died in the attack, police confirmed. Five others were rushed to nearby hospitals in serious condition. Above, police respond to the stabbing attack
The suspect was hospitalized after being taken into custody, police say. The arrest occurred about one mile from the parliament building where the attack occurred
The attack occurred late on Saturday night near the National Assembly (above) in the capital of the French-speaking Canadian province
Quebec City police tweeted shortly after 4am that the situation was under control.
‘According to our initial information, there is no indication that the suspect may have acted on motives other than personal ones,’ the tweet reads.
The Quebec City police counter-terrorism unit is also taking part in the investigation into the incident.
Martin Rioux told CBC News that he was walking in the area at the time of the incident with his partner when they saw two police cars and a body on the sidewalk.
‘We arrived at the beginning of the intervention,’ he said. ‘There was a lot of adrenaline. Especially when you see police officers walking and running with their weapons drawn.’
Jordan Proulst told Radio-Canada he was walking down Saint-Jean Street when he saw several police cars race past in the direction of the Château Frontenac.
‘There is a strong police presence,’ he recounted. ‘In front of me there are three, four, five, six police cars, which have made a barrier.’
According to the network, it was a security guard at the Quebec City Port was the one who eventually spotted the suspect and alerted police.
During the manhunt, police issued an urgent warning to those in the area, asking them to stay indoors.
‘Avoid the Parliament Hill area. The suspect is still not located. For citizens of the whole city: You are asked to stay inside,’ police said in a tweet just before midnight.
‘According to our preliminary information, the suspect is dressed in medieval clothes,’ cops said.
After the arrest, police tweeted: ‘We still ask the citizens of Quebec City to stay inside with the doors locked because an investigation is still underway.’
It comes after a series of deadly Islamic extremist terror attacks in France, although police did not immediately reveal a potential connection.
Two weeks ago, a teacher was beheaded in the Paris suburbs after showing his class a cartoon of the Prophet Mohammed during a discussion on free speech.
French President Emmanuel Macron drew fury from the Islamic world after defending the Charlie Hebdo cartoons.
On Thursday, three people were murdered in a Catholic basilica in Nice, in what officials called an Islamic extremism attack.
One victim, an elderly female, was beheaded. The suspect, a Tunisian man, was taken into police custody.
After the Nice attack, Macron said that France will not ‘give up on our values’ despite fury at the caricatures.
Protests are being staged across the Muslim world, with demonstrations seen in Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen, and India.
Police urge anyone who witnessed the attack in Quebec City to to dial 911 or 418 641-AGIR.