Suspect laughs as he's arrested at scene of Manchester stabbings

A knifeman who stabbed three people at a Manchester shopping centre has been arrested on suspicion of terrorism, Greater Manchester Police have said.

Police were called to the Arndale Centre at 11.15am on Friday to reports of a stabbing.

The suspect, who is in his 40s, was detained and three people were taken to hospital with stab injuries.

Eyewitness Terry Ashworth saw a man being arrested during the police response to the incident. In (above) video he took at the scene, the man can be seen lying on the pavement laughing as police restrain him. He tells the police to "f*** off" and calls one a "pale-faced honky".

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General images around the exterior of Manchester Arndale Centre following this morning's stabbings on Friday 11th October 2019. (Photo by Eddie Garvey/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
General images around the exterior of Manchester Arndale Centre following this morning's stabbings on Friday 11th October 2019. (Photo by Eddie Garvey/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
General images around the exterior of Manchester Arndale Centre following this morning's stabbings on Friday 11th October 2019. (Photo by Eddie Garvey/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
Police forensics officers work outside Arndale Centre shopping complex in Manchester, northwest England on October 11, 2019, following a series of stabbings. - Police arrested a man on terror charges Friday after a mass stabbing at a shopping centre in Manchester, northwest England, that left five people injured. The man in his 40s was "lunging and attacking people" with a large knife in the Arndale shopping centre, Police Chief Russ Jackson said. The suspect was detained within five minutes and initially arrested for assault, before this was changed to an accusation of preparing and instigating an act of terrorism. (Photo by Lindsey Parnaby / AFP) (Photo by LINDSEY PARNABY/AFP via Getty Images)
A Police officer uses a drone as he works outside the Arndale Centre shopping complex in Manchester, northwest England on October 11, 2019, following a series of stabbings. - Police arrested a man on terror charges Friday after a mass stabbing at a shopping centre in Manchester, northwest England, that left five people injured. The man in his 40s was "lunging and attacking people" with a large knife in the Arndale shopping centre, Police Chief Russ Jackson said. The suspect was detained within five minutes and initially arrested for assault, before this was changed to an accusation of preparing and instigating an act of terrorism. (Photo by Lindsey Parnaby / AFP) (Photo by LINDSEY PARNABY/AFP via Getty Images)
Police forensics officers work outside Arndale Centre shopping complex in Manchester, northwest England on October 11, 2019, following a series of stabbings. - Police arrested a man on terror charges Friday after a mass stabbing at a shopping centre in Manchester, northwest England, that left five people injured. The man in his 40s was "lunging and attacking people" with a large knife in the Arndale shopping centre, Police Chief Russ Jackson said. The suspect was detained within five minutes and initially arrested for assault, before this was changed to an accusation of preparing and instigating an act of terrorism. (Photo by Lindsey Parnaby / AFP) (Photo by LINDSEY PARNABY/AFP via Getty Images)
Police officers stand on duty at a cordon outside the Arndale Centre shopping complex in Manchester, northwest England on October 11, 2019, following a series of stabbings. - Police arrested a man on terror charges Friday after a mass stabbing at a shopping centre in Manchester, northwest England, that left five people injured. The man in his 40s was "lunging and attacking people" with a large knife in the Arndale shopping centre, Police Chief Russ Jackson said. The suspect was detained within five minutes and initially arrested for assault, before this was changed to an accusation of preparing and instigating an act of terrorism. (Photo by Lindsey Parnaby / AFP) (Photo by LINDSEY PARNABY/AFP via Getty Images)
Police forensics officers work outside Arndale Centre shopping complex in Manchester, northwest England on October 11, 2019, following a series of stabbings. - Police arrested a man on terror charges Friday after a mass stabbing at a shopping centre in Manchester, northwest England, that left five people injured. The man in his 40s was "lunging and attacking people" with a large knife in the Arndale shopping centre, Police Chief Russ Jackson said. The suspect was detained within five minutes and initially arrested for assault, before this was changed to an accusation of preparing and instigating an act of terrorism. (Photo by Lindsey Parnaby / AFP) (Photo by LINDSEY PARNABY/AFP via Getty Images)
A sign is pictured outside a cordoned off Arndale Centre shopping complex in Manchester, northwest England on October 11, 2019, following a series of stabbings. - Police arrested a man on terror charges Friday after a mass stabbing at a shopping centre in Manchester, northwest England, that left five people injured. The man in his 40s was "lunging and attacking people" with a large knife in the Arndale shopping centre, Police Chief Russ Jackson said. The suspect was detained within five minutes and initially arrested for assault, before this was changed to an accusation of preparing and instigating an act of terrorism. (Photo by Lindsey Parnaby / AFP) (Photo by LINDSEY PARNABY/AFP via Getty Images)
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Armed police officers leave the Arndale Centre on October 11, 2019 in Manchester, England. A man in his 40s was arrested on suspicion of assault, as paramedics treated five people for injuries at Manchester Arndale, a large shopping complex in the city centre. (Photo by Anthony Devlin/Getty Images)
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Security guards stop members of the public from entering the Arndale Centre on October 11, 2019 in Manchester, England. A man in his 40s was arrested on suspicion of assault, as paramedics treated five people for injuries at Manchester Arndale, a large shopping complex in the city centre. (Photo by Anthony Devlin/Getty Images)
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Forensic officers search outside the Arndale Centre on October 11, 2019 in Manchester, England. A man in his 40s was arrested on suspicion of assault, as paramedics treated five people for injuries at Manchester Arndale, a large shopping complex in the city centre. (Photo by Anthony Devlin/Getty Images)
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Security guards stop members of the public from entering the Arndale Centre on October 11, 2019 in Manchester, England. A man in his 40s was arrested on suspicion of assault, as paramedics treated five people for injuries at Manchester Arndale, a large shopping complex in the city centre. (Photo by Anthony Devlin/Getty Images)
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Armed police surround Arndale shopping centre, where a man allegedly stabbed five people on October 11, 2019 in Manchester, England. A man in his 40s was arrested on suspicion of assault, as paramedics treated five people for stab wounds at Manchester Arndale, a large shopping complex in the city centre. (Photo by Anthony Devlin/Getty Images)
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Forensic officers search outside the Arndale Centre on October 11, 2019 in Manchester, England. A man in his 40s was arrested on suspicion of assault, as paramedics treated five people for injuries at Manchester Arndale, a large shopping complex in the city centre. (Photo by Anthony Devlin/Getty Images)
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: An armed police officer patrols outside the Arndale Centre on October 11, 2019 in Manchester, England. A man in his 40s was arrested on suspicion of assault, as paramedics treated five people for injuries at Manchester Arndale, a large shopping complex in the city centre. (Photo by Anthony Devlin/Getty Images)
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Paramedics exit Arndale shopping centre, where a man allegedly stabbed five people on October 11, 2019 in Manchester, England. A man in his 40s was arrested on suspicion of assault, as paramedics treated five people for stab wounds at Manchester Arndale, a large shopping complex in the city centre. (Photo by Anthony Devlin/Getty Images)
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Police surround Arndale shopping centre, where a man allegedly stabbed five people on October 11, 2019 in Manchester, England. A man in his 40s was arrested on suspicion of assault, as paramedics treated five people for stab wounds at Manchester Arndale, a large shopping complex in the city centre. (Photo by Anthony Devlin/Getty Images)
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Officers from Counter Terrorism Police North West were called in to investigate, and at around 3.15pm, Greater Manchester Police Assistant Chief Constable Russ Jackson said the suspect had been arrested on suspicion of the commission, preparation and instigation of an act of terrorism.

He added that investigators did not believe anyone else to be involved in the attack.

The suspect was first arrested on suspicion of a serious assault, the force said.

Mr Jackson said the suspect had been armed with a large knife as he entered the Exchange Court of the shopping centre where he "lunged" at shoppers.

He said the first to intervene were two unarmed police community support officers who had been nearby, and who tried to confront the attacker who then chased them with a knife as they called for assistance.

He added: "Other officers both armed and unarmed quickly responded and within five minutes he was challenged and detained by armed officers on Market Street outside the Arndale Centre.

"We do not know the motivation for this terrible attack. It appears random, is certainly brutal and of course extremely frightening for anyone who witnessed it."

Mr Jackson said the incident was "bound to bring back memories of the awful events of 2017".

He added: "Although the injuries are nasty, we are told that, thankfully, none are life-threatening."

He said the force had increased patrols in the area, but added: "We do not believe there is a wider threat at this time and we are hoping to return the city to normality by tomorrow morning."

Mr Jackson called on anyone who may have been present to send any images or footage they have taken to the GMP website.

Greater Manchester Police initially stated five people had been injured, but later amended the figure to four.

A 19-year-old woman and another woman for whom no age was given were both taken to hospital with stab injuries and their condition was described as stable by the force.

Manchester Arndale centre stabbings

A man in his 50s was also hospitalised with stab wounds, while a woman in her 40s was treated by paramedics at the scene but was not stabbed.

North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) said one patient had suffered "serious" injuries adding that it had been stood down from the incident at 1.56pm.

One shop worker, who gave his name only as Jordan, 23, told the PA news agency: "A man was running around with a knife lunging at multiple people, one of which came into my store visibly shaken with a small graze.

"Soon after, security staff told all retail staff to close their doors and move the public to the back of the stores."

Armed police at the scene

Freddie Houlder, 22, from Market Drayton, was in the centre when he heard "a load of screams just outside" the shop he was in.

He said a woman then came into the shop and told others "a guy just ran past the shop and tried to stab me".

Mr Houlder added: "Luckily she had quite a thick jacket – she thought originally it was a fake knife because of how easily it grazed off but police came in and said it was a real knife and she burst in to tears."

He said he was evacuated several minutes later, at which point he saw "a bunch of curtains covering someone seriously injured or dead, I don't know".

"I definitely don't think it was gang violence because this guy was going around trying to stab random people, I believe."

A member of the Malone family, who frequently appear on Channel 4's Gogglebox, was also caught up in the incident.

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