Reading, UK – Stabbing Incident Treated as Terror Attack

By Faye Higbee

A stabbing incident that left three people dead in Britain on Sunday morning is being treated as a terror attack (Fox). The stabbing took place in Reading, UK at Forbury Gardens Park, when a 25 year old male from Libya went on a stabbing rampage. Three other people were seriously injured.

The call came in at around 1900, local time, on Saturday that several people were stabbed at Forbury Gardens Park. Thames Valley police stated that officers had the suspect in custody within five minutes of the call.

“These officers – a few of whom were student officers – ran towards danger to help those in need without second thought. A young, unarmed police officer took down the suspect without hesitation, while another performed emergency first aid to those who were injured.” Home Secretary Priti PatelĀ 

The male’s name is Khairi Saadallah, 25, and he is known to MI5 from an attempt to travel to Syria in 2019. When it was determined that he was no threat at the time, they did not open a file on him, according to the BBC.

“Security sources said the suspect came to the attention of the security services after they received information he had aspirations to travel abroad – potentially for terrorism, according to the BBC’s home affairs correspondent Dominic Casciani.

When the information was further investigated, as the first stage of looking into a potential lead, no genuine threat or immediate risk was identified.

No case file was opened which would have made him a target for further investigation.” BBC

Initially, Saadallah was arrested for suspicion of murder, but now has been re-arrested under Britain’s Terrorism Act of 2000. The Counter-terrorism unit took over the investigation quickly after police questioned the suspect.

One of the persons killed in the Reading incident was an American citizen from Philadelphia, Joe Ritchie-Bennett, 39. Ritchie-Bennett had lived in England for 15 years. One of the other deaths was a local man, well-loved history teacher James Furlong, who taught in Holt School in Wokingham. The third person was not yet named.

Two of the injured people have been released from the hospital, and the other is in serious condition.

Featured photo of suspect Khairi Saadallah via UK police

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