Another convert “misunderstanding” Islam. Oh, au contraire. He understands it all too well.
Another “disgruntled” Muslim. Disgruntled because his colleagues would not follow sharia law.
They can spin it as they like. This is pure terror. And how will the French respond? With teddy bears and silly bracelets and marches of “unity.” It makes me want to throw up.
Deaf Islamic convert is named as Paris police HQ attacker: IT worker who fell out with supervisor ‘after he refused to deal with women’ slaughters four colleagues, including female officer, with a knife – as police arrest Muslim wife
- Michael Harpon, 45, stabbed and killed four colleagues with a ceramic knife
- The knifeman was shot dead in the courtyard of the Paris police headquarters
- Colleagues said he had worked there for 20 years and had security clearance
- Anti-terror agencies are ‘evaluating’ the situation, the Paris prosecutor said
- Emmanuel Macron has gone to the police headquarters to show his ‘solidarity’A deaf civilian police worker who had recently converted to Islam was shot dead in Paris today after murdering four colleagues with a ceramic knife following a ‘dispute over working with female colleagues’.
Michael Harpon, 45, caused the bloodbath in the French capital’s historic Police Prefecture, next door to Notre Dame Cathedral.
Investigators have not ruled out a possible terrorist motivation for the Thursday afternoon attack, which left a woman and three men dead.
All were repeatedly stabbed by Harpon, who had worked in the IT department at the Prefecture since 2003, in the worst loss of French police lives in a single day since World War II.
Harpon had recently been reprimanded by his female boss over his refusal to interact with women, Actu17 reported.
Within hours of the attack, anti-terrorist officers had raided Harpon’s flat in an apartment block at Gonesse, a suburb some 12 miles from the scene of the attack.
His wife, Iham, was arrested, as an investigating source said that the nature of Harpon’s attack corresponded with similar ones carried out by terrorists affiliated to Islamic State and Al-Qaeda.
French police secure the area in front of the police headquarters in Paris after a knife attack which killed four including at least one policewoman on Thursday
The attack took place at the Paris police headquarters in the historic centre of the city, near the fire-ravaged Notre Dame cathedral
French police secure the area in front of the Paris police headquarters after the knife rampage today
‘An investigation has been launched into a grudge the assailant may have held against his colleagues, but terrorism cannot be ruled out,’ said the source.
‘Many of those involved in similar attacks on the police have been Muslim converts influenced by radical terrorist groups.’
Christophe Crépin, spokesman for the union France Police Policeman in Anger, told The Telegraph: ‘I know this man. He worked in IT and he had long-running problems with his superior. He stabbed her first and then colleagues intervened and were stabbed as well. I am told he then got hold of a firearm.’
Harpon, who was deaf since childhood, was originally from the Caribbean island of Martinique – a French overseas territory.
He had been married since 2014, and converted to his wife’s religion in 2018 before they had their first child together.
An eye witness to the attack, which happened just after 1pm, said: ‘I saw a man with a knife in his hand.
‘He was running after a policeman. He was told to drop his knife, but he did not stop and the policeman fired.
‘At first I thought it was a training exercise, but no. The policeman, who was on a break, shouted out three warnings, but the assailant would not stop. The police officer fired two shots and then the assailant fell.’
Harpon originally attacked three male officers in two offices on the first floor of the Prefecture, and then took his knife to two females – one died, and another was seriously injured.
None of Harpon’s victims have been identified by name.
A ceramic knife would not have activated metal detectors, and Harpon would not have been searched.
Harpon worked directly to the Directorate of Intelligence of the Prefecture of Police, or DRPP.
An air ambulance flies over the Seine as emergency services respond to the knife rampage in Paris on Thursday
Emergency personnel stand near an air ambulance helicopter on the Pont Marie in Paris
Colleagues described Harpon as a previously trusted employee who had full security clearance and had never caused problems before.
The security crisis led to President Emmanuel Macron immediately visiting the Prefecture in person, along with his Prime Minister, Edouard Philippe, and Interior Minister Christophe Castaner.
Paris prosecutor Remy Heitz said anti-terror authorities were ‘evaluating’ the situation and said a murder investigation had been launched.
Prosecutor Mr Heitz told reporters at the scene that three of the dead were police officers and the fourth was an administrative assistant. A police union official had said earlier that all four were police officers.
In the aftermath of the attack today:
- President Emmanuel Macron went to police headquarters to show his ‘solidarity’ with the force;
- Witnesses described a ‘panic’ as gunshots rang out and weeping police officers came running out of an office;
- The attacker was said to have started his rampage in an office before moving to a stairwell and then the courtyard where he was shot dead;
- Police were searching the home of the suspect, who was described as a trusted employee of 20 years’ experience at police headquarters;
- France’s interior minister said a wounded police employee was undergoing emergency surgery;
- Authorities cordoned off the scene with emergency vehicles, an air ambulance and a patrol boat on the Seine.
Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo confirmed that ‘several people’ were fatally wounded in the force’s worst loss of life on a single day since World War II.
According to union officials, the attack began around 1pm in an office and spread out elsewhere in the large police compound near Notre Dame cathedral.
Reports said the man had attacked at least one woman in a stairwell before moving on to the courtyard where he was shot dead.
Emery Siamandi, an employee at police headquarters, said he heard gunshots and saw two weeping officers running out of a room.
A third officer, described by Mr Siamandi as the policeman who shot and killed the assailant, came out on his knees, also in tears.
‘People were running everywhere, there was crying everywhere,’ said Mr Siamandi, an interpreter who was in the building when the attack happened.
‘I heard a shot, I gathered it was inside,’ he said. ‘Moments later, I saw police officers crying. They were in a panic.’
An investigating source said the attacker ‘was involved in an argument with someone and then erupted in anger, targeting other police colleagues before being neutralised.’
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