CANBERRA – A 24-year-old man has been charged over an alleged stabbing at the Australian National University (ANU) in the nation’s capital.
Australian Capital Territory (ACT) Policing said in a statement on Tuesday that a man has been charged with two counts of attempted murder, two counts of assault, and one count of possessing an object to be used to kill over the incident at ANU’s campus in central Canberra on Monday afternoon, reported Xinhua.
Two female students, both 20, were taken to hospital on Monday, where they remained on Tuesday, to be treated for stab wounds, with one in critical condition and the other stable.
A third victim, a 34-year-old man, was also treated on Monday night after being assaulted in the attack but sustained only minor injuries and was not hospitalised.
Police will allege that at about 2.40 pm (0440 GMT) Monday, Sept 18, 2023, the 24-year-old man initially engaged a male student by hitting him on the head with a frying pan, with the student subsequently running away from the scene, the ACT Policing statement said on Tuesday.
“The 24-year-old then allegedly stabbed a 20-year-old female student multiple times before chasing a second 20-year-old female student and stabbing her.
“Attending police were directed by witnesses to the location of the 24-year-old man and he was taken into custody.”
Daily newspaper the Canberra Times on Tuesday identified the alleged perpetrator as former student Alex Ophel, who was in 2017 charged with five counts of attempted murder after attacking his tutor and ANU classmates with a baseball bat in his statistics class but was found not guilty by reason of mental impairment.
ACT Policing said they have not identified any motive for Monday’s incident. – Bernama