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Paris police knifeman ‘heard voices’ before deadly rampage

Paris police knifeman ‘heard voices’ before deadly rampage
The Paris police attacker “heard voices” during an agitated “fit of dementia” the night before murdering four of his police colleagues in a deadly knife rampage, according to his wife.

Computer expert Michael Harpon was shot in the head by a police officer after killing three men and one woman with a ceramic knife in a frenzied attack at police headquarters in Paris on Thursday. Two other people were hurt during the incident but their injuries are not believed to be live-threatening.

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In the aftermath of the bloodbath, French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner said Harpon, who was a recent convert to Islam, had “never shown any behavioural problems” during more than 15 years with the force.

Investigators questioning Harpon’s wife Iham say he became “incoherent” during a deranged episode on Wednesday night before waking “abruptly” on the morning of the killing spree, BFM reported.  

The 45-year-old, who was born in the French Caribbean territory of Martinique, had worked for the police since 2003 without ever raising any red flags with authorities. Officials say there is no indication that the attack was an act of terror but added that no theory has been ruled out at this stage of the investigation. 

“It is important to emphasise you are not a terrorist because you are Muslim and converting to Islam is not an automatic sign of radicalisation. The facts need to be looked at carefully,” government spokeswoman Sibeth Ndiaye told Franceinfo radio on Friday. “We do not have any indication that the perpetrator was radicalised,” she added.

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