UPDATE: FBI Investigating Mall Stabbing as a “Potential Act of Terrorism”
ST. CLOUD -- The St. Cloud Police Department hosted a news conference this afternoon regarding the Crossroads Center stabbing incident on Saturday night.
St. Cloud Police Chief Blair Anderson says two search warrants were issued in St. Cloud involved in the case and the suspect's vehicle was searched and impounded.
Anderson says the person responsible for the stabbing was shot and killed by an off duty Avon police officer, Jason Flaconer. The suspect was shot three times, after each shot the suspect stood up and attempted to attack Officer Flaconer.
Lead investigator Lieutenant Lori Ellering says security footage from individual stores are being pieced together and there is footage of Officer Flaconer shooting the suspect inside Macy's.
Nine people were stabbed during the incident, seven men and two women, all suffered from non-life threatening injuries.
FBI special agent Richard Thorton says the incident is considered "a potential act of terrorism", this is a "fluid situation" and it will continue to evolve as the investigation progresses.
Authorities have not released any information on the suspect other than confirming he or she was not a mall employee.
On Saturday police were called to the Crossroads Center Mall shortly after 8:00 PM after a report came in of a person stabbing individuals throughout the mall.
Anderson confirmed that the suspect referenced "Allah" and asked at least one victim if they were Muslim before stabbing them.
An Islamic State-run news agency claims the suspect was a “soldier of the Islamic State.”
Crossroads Center will remain closed on Sunday and reopen on Monday.