Man shot by police after stabbing spree in Melbourne city center

One person has been killed on a central Melbourne street where a knife wielding man was left in a critical condition after being shot by police. One of the officers raises his weapon, a shot is heard and the man falls to the ground clutching his chest.

Witnesses said they heard a loud explosion and saw a vehicle bust into flames outside Target on Bourke Street, between Swanston and Russell Streets, about 4.20pm.

"A man was arrested at the scene and has been taken to hospital under police guard in a critical condition", it said. At a press conference, a police spokesperson said there are no links to terrorism at this stage.

"A small number of people are being treated for stab wounds", the statement said.

"A second person has been taken to hospital with a head injury". Condition not yet known.

Two other victims have been taken to hospital with injuries.

'The exact circumstances are yet to be determined at this stage.

"The bomb response unit have cordoned off the area, the MFB have extinguished the vehicle fire, the bomb response unit is now making the scene safe", Superintendent David Clayton told reporters.

"It's so chaotic", witness Sarah told Tom Elliott.

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Police work at the crime scene following a stabbing incident in Melbourne on 9 November, 2018.

They had initially thought the man was running to catch a tram close by, before a nearby police auto rushed to the scene.

A witness filmed the horrifying scenes as the attacker tried to thrust his knife towards police on Bourke Street.

Video taken by witnesses shows a auto on fire in the area and bystanders using a shopping trolley and chair to confront the attacker.

The incident occurred on Bourke Street just outside the Target Centre, near the intersection of Swanston St.

"Anyone with information or who witnessed the incident is asked to go to Melbourne West Police Station to make a statement", a police statement said. I heard at least one gunshot initially, ' one said.

"I really wanted to help but I was in shock, I didn't know what to do".

"I've never seen a fire that big before".

James Gargasoulas is accused of deliberately driving his auto into pedestrians on Bourke Street, hitting 33 people.

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