From ABC and Cairns News
More than 30 people witnessed a double-stabbing at a north Queensland backpackers hostel which left one woman dead and another fighting for his life in hospital, police say.
Police were called to Shelley’s Backpackers in Home Hill, south of Townsville, after receiving reports of a knife attack at about 11:15pm on Tuesday.
They arrived to find a woman, a British national, dead, and a man, a 30-year-old British national, with serious knife wounds.
He was taken to Townsville Hospital where he remains in a critical condition.
Another man, a 29-year-old French national, has been taken into police custody. Witnesses reported the French assailant screamed “Ali ackabar” as he stabbed the two innocent backpackers.
He received an injury to one of his arms.
Detective Superintendent Ray Rohweder told a press conference more than 30 people witnessed the incident.
“As we understand it at the moment, the French gentleman, the person who’s helping us, has attacked the two British nationals,” Det Supt Rohweder said.
“We don’t have any motive at this stage. We’re taking a number of statements in relation to what exactly was said on the evening.”
Dep Supt Rohweder said the first responding officers were confronted by a terrible scene.
“But both officers in my book acted tremendously and ensured the safety of other persons at the venue,” he said.
Police have taken possession of a knife believed to be the weapon used in the attack.