Minnesota mall attack investigated as possible terrorism; 9th victim revealed

People stand near the entrance on the north side of Crossroads Center mall between Macy's and Target as officials investigate a reported multiple stabbing incident, Saturday, Sept. 17, 2016, in St. Cloud, Minn. St. Cloud Times via AP
People stand near the entrance on the north side of Crossroads Center mall between Macy's and Target as officials investigate a reported multiple stabbing incident, Saturday, Sept. 17, 2016, in St. Cloud, Minn. St. Cloud Times via AP

ST. CLOUD, Minn. (AP) – An FBI official says investigators are viewing an attack at a Minnesota mall in which a man stabbed nine people as a possible act of terrorism.

FBI Special Agent-in-Charge Rick Thornton said Sunday that authorities are digging into the suspect’s background to determine his possible motivation for Saturday night’s attack at the Crossroads Center mall in St. Cloud.

An Islamic State-run news agency claimed the man was a “soldier of the Islamic State.”

St. Cloud’s mayor and police chief praised the swift actions of an off-duty, part-time Avon police officer for shooting and killing the attacker. They identified him as Officer Jason Falconer.

Mayor David Kleis says there were nine people who were hurt, not eight, as authorities previously reported. He says the ninth person went to a hospital and was treated and released. Three of the victims remain hospitalized with injuries that aren’t considered life-threatening.

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