Armed Attack at Melbourne Shopping Centre

3 April , 2017

On Monday March 27th, at about 10am, a woman was attacked by a man armed with an axe, at Westfield Fountain Gate Shopping Centre, in Narre Warren, Melbourne. Police arrested a man, believed to be her ex-partner, over the incident.The woman in her 30s suffered upper body injuries after being struck by the axe multiple times. She was taken to the Alfred Hospital in a stable condition. The attack occurred at the Beauty and Brow Parlour on the first level of the centre. The woman's employer said she was so badly beaten she could not speak after the attack.One witness, Trevor, told 3AW he came down the escalators near the Beauty and Brow Parlour moments after the attack and described seeing the woman on the floor surrounded by a bit of blood. Trevor said he was then ushered into the storeroom at the back of the Apple Store. "I was in the Apple store, just up from where the attack happened. All the Apple managers came out, closed the glass doors and moved everyone straight to the back, into the storeroom."News of the attack spread quickly through the shopping centre, with shocked customers fearing the woman had been killed. Tamar Klein, a store assistant, said there was fear and confusion as two girls ran screaming from the shop where the attack occurred. "One of them was screaming 'Had an axe! Had an axe!' So we didn't know what was going on," she said. "These days you imagine if it is a terror attack. You don't know if it is between two people or if they will hurt more people."Employees at the shopping centre acted quickly to implement their emergency response procedures and initiate a security lock down. Fortunately, this event didn’t escalate and result in further injuries.This incident is a reminder that it is important to have effective emergency response procedures in place to ensure workers in the premises know what to do in the event of an emergency, such as an armed intruder threat. The First 5 Minutes Team are available to provide more information on threat response and emergency procedures. Contact us for further discussion.

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