Radicalized ex-prisoner killed in shooting after stabbing policewoman in western France

Radicalized ex-prisoner killed in shooting after stabbing policewoman in western France

CHAPELLE-SUR-ERDRE, France – A radicalized ex-prisoner on a watchlist for potential terrorist threats on Friday stabbed a policewoman inside her post in western France and died as a result of a shootout with the police, a government minister said.

The victim was seriously injured but is expected to survive, Home Secretary Gerald Darmanin said.

The assailant was released from prison in March after an eight-year sentence for violent crime and was on a security service register for people at risk of terrorism.

“He was reported in 2016 for strictly practicing Islam, for radicalization,” Darmanin told reporters after visiting the Chapelle-sur-Erdre police station, near Nantes, in western France, where the attack took place.

French special police forces and firefighters in La Chapelle-sur-Erdre, western France, Friday.Stéphane Mahé / Reuters

The attacker was cornered after a manhunt involving two police helicopters and more than 200 officers, the national gendarmerie said.

There was a shooting as police intervened to arrest the man, police said. He died shortly after and two officers were injured, he added.

The incident came a month after a police administrative worker was stabbed to death near Paris by a Tunisian national who watched Islamic religious videos glorifying acts of jihad just before launching his attack.

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Stéphanie Monferme was killed on the threshold of her police station by a Tunisian national who had watched Islamic religious videos glorifying acts of jihad just before launching her attack.

Darmanin said the suspect in Friday’s assault was diagnosed with severe schizophrenia and was undergoing medical treatment after being released from prison. He had been placed in an apartment where he was watched by specialists, added Darmanin.

The suspect, who stole his victim’s gun, opened fire on police officers, Darmanin said.