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Motive sought for deadly stabbing spree at Paris police HQ

  • Published at 12:11 am October 5th, 2019
WEB_ Police Stabbing
French police secure the area in front of the Paris Police headquarters in Paris, France, October 3, 2019 Reuters

Officials said there was no indication that the rampage was an act of terror but emphasized that no theory was being ruled out at this stage

Investigators combed an IT staffer's computer Friday for clues to his motive for stabbing four colleagues to death at police headquarters in Paris, as his wife said he had been "agitated" before going on the rampage with a kitchen knife.

The 45-year-old computer expert killed three men and a woman – three police officers and an administrative worker – in a frenzied 30-minute attack that ended when he was shot dead.

Two others were injured in the Thursday lunchtime stabbing spree that sent shock waves through an embattled French police force already complaining of low morale.

Officials said there was no indication that the rampage was an act of terror but emphasized that no theory was being ruled out at this stage.

The man, named as Mickael H, was born on the French overseas territory of Martinique in the Caribbean and was a recent convert to Islam. He had worked for the police for over a decade-and-a-half without ever arousing suspicion.

'Not automatic sign'

The attacker's widow told investigators her husband, who had a severe hearing disability, displayed "unusual and agitated behaviour" the night before his crime, a source close to the investigation told AFP.

A search of the couple's house in a low-income Paris suburb near  Charles de Gaulle airport yielded no evidence that the man, who became a Muslim about 18 months ago, had been motivated by radical religious ideology, the source added.