The security guard who was stabbed in the neck during the Bourke Street terror attack has recounted the moment he feared for his life after being set upon by a knife-wielding terrorist.
In an interview with Victoria Police, Shadi, 26, who only wanted his first name used, from Hampton Park in Melbourne’s south east, described how terrorist Hassan Khalif Shire Ali “came out of nowhere” at 4.30pm on Friday.
Shadi, who had been working on Bourke Street as a security guard since September, described the attack as “very quick” and “just a blur at the time”.
“Everyone was screaming and running, then out of nowhere … I got attacked.
“I didn’t even have time to react. He straight away stabbed me, tried to kill me. He hit me in the neck.”
Despite there being “blood everywhere” after being stabbed, Shadi said he was worried Shire Ali would attack more innocent civilians.
“The attacker was on the loose, stabbing people for no reason, no cause whatsoever.”
But Shadi, covered in blood and struggling to see, had to run away to save himself.
“I tried to defend the attacker off, but I couldn’t defend myself any more.
“There was too much blood on me. I couldn’t physically see out of the left side of my eye. I had to get out of there.”
“I’m very lucky to be alive.”
Shadi thanked the police officer who assisted him moments after the attack.
“I don’t know his name, but he was there with me holding my neck from Bourke Street to the Royal Melbourne Hospital, putting pressure on my wound,” he said.
“Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”
Shadi was treated in hospital for stab wounds and released on Sunday, but has not yet returned to work.
He said he had been spending as much time with family as possible as he recovers.
“I want to push to become a police officer. What happened on Friday makes me want to protect and serve the public more.”
Lord Mayor Sally Capp praised Shadi for putting his life on the line, adding she would nominate him for a bravery award.
“Shadi showed incredible bravery and courage by fending off the attacker and then returning to check on the welfare of staff,” Cr Capp said in a statement.
Shire Ali’s attack killed much-loved Pelligrini’s Espresso Bar co-owner Sisto Malaspina, 74.
A state funeral for Mr Malaspina will be held on Tuesday morning at St Patrick’s Cathedral in East Melbourne.
Tasmanian businessman Robert Patterson, 58, was also injured in the incident and was released from hospital on Tuesday.
Shire Ali, whose passport was cancelled by authorities in 2015 amid concerns the Somali-born man would try to go to Syria to fight for Islamic State, was shot by police and died later in hospital.