OHIO (United States) – A Somali-born Ohio State student crashed his vehicle into pedestrians on the Columbus campus Monday, then slashed students with a butcher knife before being fatally shot by a university police officer, authorities said.
Eleven people were rushed to hospitals and one was in critical condition, according to university Police Chief Craig Stone. The incident is being investigated by the FBI, although no confirmed information has surfaced yet as to whether the attack was terror-related.
The drama began shortly before 10 a.m. ET, when the suspect deliberately drove over a curb and began his attack, Stone said. He said the officer arrived about a minute later and engaged the suspect.
“We are very fortunate that an OSUPD officer was there and took quick action,” Stone said.
Monica Moll, the university’s public safety director, identified the assailant as Abdul Razak Ali Artan, a student at the school.
Multiple media outlets including NBC News and the Associated Press, citing sources who requested anonymity, described him as a 20-year-old native of Somalia living in the United States as a legal permanent resident.
He was shot by Officer Alan Horujko, 28, who has been on the university force for almost two years, Moll said.
Malaysian students are reported to be safe following the attack at Ohio State University in United States on Monday, says Education Malaysia Washington DC.
American media outlets reported that a student crashed his vehicle onto the sidewalk at the Columbus, Ohio, campus before slashing students with a butcher knife and was later fatally shot by a campus police officer.
“All 296 Malaysian students are safe,” assured the education office.
Columbus Police Chief Chief Kim Jacobs, whose officers also responded to the attack, said terrorism had not been ruled out. “That’s why our federal partners are here and helping,” she said. “I think we have to consider that it is.”
“Here in the United States, our most immediate threat still comes from lone attackers that are not only capable of unleashing great harm, but are also extremely difficult, and in some cases, virtually impossible to identify or interdict,” said Rep. Adam Schiff of California.
The SITE Intelligence Group, a Bethesda,-Md.-based company that tracks online activity of potential terror organizations, said the attack mirrors some the instructions that ISIS has issued.
Homeland security adviser Lisa Monaco briefed President Obama on the incident, White House press secretary Josh Earnest said. He said FBI agents in Columbus were assisting with the investigation.
The Associated Press reported that Ohio State’s student newspaper, The Lantern, ran an interview in August with a student named Abdul Razak Artan, who identified himself as a Muslim and a third-year logistics management student who had just transferred from Columbus State in the fall.
He said he was looking for a place to pray openly and worried about how he would be received.
In recent months, federal law enforcement officials have raised concerns about online extremist propaganda that encourages knife and car attacks, which are easier to pull off than bombings.