London Police Say No Signs of Radicalization in Knife Attacker
London police said Thursday that they found no evidence of radicalization to suggest terrorism after a Somali man stabbed a woman to death and wounded five other people in central London. Instead, they say the attack was likely triggered by mental health issues.
Police arrested the 19-year-old man in Russell Square, near the University of London, after incapacitating him with a Taser. The man – who has yet to be publicly named – is in police custody at a nearby hospital.
Police identified the 60-year-old woman who was stabbed to death as an American citizen. She was treated at the scene by paramedics, but pronounced dead shortly after. Three victims were released from the hospital early Thursday morning. The condition of two others was unknown.
Mark Rowley, the Metropolitan Police Service's Assistant Commissioner for Specialist Operations, said police believe the mental health of the suspect to be a “significant factor” in the case, but cautioned that it is just one of several lines of inquiry.
Police received a call about the attack in progress around 10:30 p.m. local time, and within about 10 minutes had arrived on the scene and subdued the attacker.
Rowley said that, as a precautionary measure, there would be an increased presence of armed police on the streets of London Thursday morning to provide Londoners “reassurance and safety.” The knife attack came the same day London officials announced an increase in armed police patrolling the city in an effort to prevent terror attacks.
US Supreme Court Blocks Bathroom Choice for Transgender Teen
The U.S. Supreme Court has put on hold a groundbreaking court ruling that required a Virginia school district to accommodate a transgender high school student’s request to use the boys’ bathroom.
The high court agreed Wednesday to allow the Gloucester County School Board to bar Gavin Grimm from using the bathroom that matches his gender identity, until the justices decide whether to review an appeals court ruling in his case.
The justices split, 5-3, on the issue, with Democratic-appointed Justice Stephen Breyer agreeing with the four Republican appointees. Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan opposed the stay.
Last year, the American Civil Liberties Union sued on behalf of the 17-year-old Grimm to challenge the school board's bathroom policy, which requires transgender students to use alternative restroom facilities.
Grimm, who was born female but identifies as male, has undergone hormone therapy and has legally changed his name.