A few new details have emerged in the murder of a policeman and his wife (also a police officer) in a Paris suburb that we reported late last night in which ISIS has taken credit for.
"God has enabled one of the caliphate's soldiers in city of Les Mureaux near Paris to stab to death the deputy police chief and his wife," an official broadcast on its Albayan Radio said.
Sources have identified the assailant as Larossi Abballa, 25, a Frenchman of Moroccan origin, who had previously been was jailed in 2013 for helping Islamist militants go to Pakistan and had been under security service surveillance, including wiretaps, at the time of the attack, police sources said. Abballa walked up to a policeman (not in uniform) and stabbed him repeatedly outside of his home in Magnanville, a northwestern suburb of Paris, before going into the house and holing up with the policeman's partner and the couple's three-year-old son.
"An abject act of terrorism was carried out yesterday in Magnanville," Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said after an emergency government meeting, before visiting Les Mureaux, where the police commander worked.
Abballa allegedly posted a 13 minute video to Facebook Live in which he swore allegiance to IS, and was apparently shown considering what to do with the couple's son - "I don't know yet what I'm going to do with him" Abballa is heard saying according to French jihad expert David Thompson, who saw the video. AP adds that Abballa was once convicted of recruiting jihadi fighters.
A Facebook profile bearing the name Larossi Abballa — which vanished from the internet early Tuesday — showed a photo of a smiling, bearded man. Two recent posts featured videos critical of Israel and Saudi Arabia. The last publicly available post was a mock-up of the European Championship logo, highlighting what the poster said were masonic and occult symbols. "Some will say we see evil everywhere!" Abballa said in a message posted about 18 hours before the attack.
Loud detonations were heard at the scene as elite RAID police moved in around midnight following failed negotiations with the attacker. The attacker was killed during the assault, and sadly the woman was found dead inside the house. However, thankfully, the little boy was "in shock but unharmed."
Sources close to the inquiry and speaking on condition of anonymity said Abballa claimed allegiance to Islamic State while talking to officers, and witnesses told investigators the man may have shouted "Allahu akbar" as he stabbed the policeman.
The killer had a prior terrorism conviction French officials say. Abballa was convicted in 2013 to three years in prison, including six months suspended for "criminal association with the aim of preparing terrorist acts."
President Hollande said the couple were "murdered in cowardly fashion", and dubbed the attack as a terrorist attack. "It's unquestionably a terrorist act" Hollande said, adding that France was still "facing a very significant terrorist threat."
This tragic event comes immediately after a terrorist attack led to the deadliest mass shooting in US history in an Orlando nightclub.
It is unclear if the two events are related, but one thing is clear: Abballa was not "self radicalized", contrary to Obama's description of the Orlando shooter.