‘Hero’ police officer who saved countless lives in Sydney mall attack named and pictured

Inspector Amy Scott was the first to reach the scene and shot the attacker after he lunged towards her with a knife

Holly Evans
Sunday 14 April 2024 15:05 BST
Inspector Amy Scott bravely shot knifeman Joel Cauchi after tracking him down on her own
Inspector Amy Scott bravely shot knifeman Joel Cauchi after tracking him down on her own (via Reuters)

An Australian police officer has been hailed as a “hero” after she single-handedly tracked down a knifeman and shot him dead to save lives.

Inspector Amy Scott had been carrying out routine duties near Westfield Bondi Junction and was the first on the scene after reports emerged that a number of people had been stabbed at the Sydney shopping mall.

After being guided by distraught members of the public, she confronted the lone knifeman, who has since been identified as 40-year-old Joel Cauchi, before firing her gun.

Her actions have been praised as heroic, with Prime Minister Anthony Albanese telling reporters: “There is no doubt that she saved lives.”

Terrified shoppers after the evacuation of Westfield Bondi Junction (AP)

Describing the moment Cauchi was killed, a witness said: “He just started floating towards us and all I heard was ‘put it down’ and then she shot him.

“But we were in no doubt, if she didn’t shoot him, he would have kept going. He was on the rampage.

“Then she walked over and gave him CPR. He had a big blade on him – she chucked the knife away. He looked like he was on a killing spree.”

In a statement following his death, Cauchi’s family said he had suffered with mental health issues since he was a teenager, and described his actions as “truly horrific”.

They added that they had “no issues” with Insp Scott as she was “only doing her job to protect others, and we hope she is coping alright”.

Brave shopper fights off Sydney mall knifeman in terrifying Westfield attack. (X)

During his rampage on Saturday afternoon, Cauchi stabbed six people to death, while another eight were taken to hospital to undergo treatment.

Emergency services were contacted at around 3.30pm to the popular shopping area, with a major incident declared and hundreds evacuated from the centre.

Among those killed is 38-year-old mother Ashlee Good, who died while protecting her nine-month-old baby who was also stabbed during the incident. Since being rushed to hospital, her young child has undergone surgery and is currently making good progress.

Other victims include architect Jade Young, 48, and Dawn Singleton, 25, who is understood to be the daughter of Australian businessman John Singleton. Security guard Faraz Tahir was also killed, with the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community of Australia describing him as a “cherished member of our community”.

Ashlee Good was killed by Cauchi, her baby survived and is in hospital (X)

In a press conference shortly after the incident, Anthony Cooke, assistant commissioner of New South Wales Police, said that Insp Scott had fired her weapon after Cauchi lunged towards her with his knife.

“Very clearly, a range of reports were made on the incident. Police attended promptly – a single unit officer, inspector of police, was nearby, attended, and went into the centre directed by a range of people,” he said.

“She confronted the offender who had moved, by this stage, to level five.

“As she continued to walk quickly behind to catch up with him, he turned to face her, raised a knife, she discharged a firearm and that person is now deceased.”

The head of the state’s police force, Karen Webb, commended her “enormous courage” and said she was now “doing well under the circumstances”.

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