Radicalized Man Leaves Prison Then Stabs, Kills Two Police Officers

A tragic scene is unfolding in Belguim as a man who was released from prison later killed three people, including two police officers.

The incident occurred in Liège where the man was given a temporary release from prison after he served time for drug-related offenses.

As BBC reports, the man used a knife to attack the officers and stole their guns. He then shot a third man in the passenger seat of a car and fled to a nearby school. While in the school he took a cleaning lady hostage before being shot and killed by police.

Check it out, per BBC:

A man has shot dead two police officers and a civilian in the eastern Belgian city of Liège.

The gunman took a female cleaner hostage at a school before being killed by police. Two other police officers were also injured.

The man’s motive is not yet clear but the incident is being treated as terrorism.

Police sources quoted in local media said the man was heard shouting “Allahu Akbar” (“God is greatest” in Arabic).

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Belgian broadcaster RTBF said the gunman was let out from prison on temporary release on Monday where he had been serving time on drug offenses. It said that he may have been radicalised while in jail.

No children at the school were reportedly harmed during the incident:

Footage on social media showed people running to safety as several gunshots rang out. Children at the school were moved to safety.

Belgium’s Prime Minister Charles Michel said he was following the situation closely and expressed his support for those caught up in the shooting.

Here’s more, from ABC News:

Two police sources told ABC News the assailant was named Benjamin Herman, a Belgian national known to police as someone who was radicalized in prison.

The Belgium federal prosecutor’s office told ABC news earlier on Tuesday it was taking over the investigation from a local Liege prosecutor because “there are elements that make us believe that it was a terror attack.”

Belgium remains on high alert — 2 on a scale of 1-4 — following a 2016 attack killed 32.

After the shooting on Tuesday, the nation’s interior minister said via Twitter: “Our thoughts are with the victims of this horrible act. We are currently working on determining what happened precisely.”

As BBC reports, Belguim and neighboring France have experienced several similar terror-related incidents over the past few years:

A Brussels-based cell was involved in the 2015 Paris attacks which left 130 people dead in several locations.

Brussels itself saw three suicide bombings in March 2016, with 32 people killed. Both the Paris and Brussels attacks were claimed by the Islamic State-group.

Later in 2016 a man attacked two police officers with machetes while shouting “Allahu Akbar” before being shot dead.

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