An attack on a New Zealand mosque was reportedly stopped on Friday when a good guy with a gun fired at the attacker[s] causing them to flee the scene, according to local media.
The terrorist attack left 49 dead and dozens injured with at least 30 of the deaths coming from the Masjid Al Noor mosque and at least 10 more deaths coming from the Linwood Masjid Mosque.
The lower number of deaths at the Linwood Masjid Mosque may in part be attributable to a good guy with a gun stopping the shooting. The New Zealand Herald reports:
A second shooting happened at a mosque in the Linwood area of the city.
One Friday prayer goer returned fire with a rifle or shotgun.
Witnesses said they heard multiple gunshots around 1.45pm.
A well known Muslim local chased the shooters and fired two shots at them as they sped off.
He was heard telling police officers he was firing in “self defence”.
“They were in a silver Subaru,” he told police.
“Authorities said they had four people in custody — three men and one woman — but later clarified that only three were believed to have been involved in the violence,” The Washington Post reported. “One man in his late 20s, whom the authorities declined to name, was charged with murder and was expected to appear in court on Saturday morning. The suspects had not been on security watch lists, officials said.”
The terrorist livestreamed the horrifying attack on social media, which left tech companies scrambling to remove the attack. Fox News reports:
“We have taken down the account of the alleged perpetrator and are working to actively remove all versions of the video from Twitter,” a Twitter spokesman said, according to BuzzFeed reporter Ryan Mac.
Facebook officials also issued a statement, according to Mac: “Our hearts go out to the victims, their families and the community affected by this horrendous act. New Zealand Police alerted us to a video on Facebook shortly after the livestream commenced and we removed both the shooter’s Facebook account and the video.”
“Don’t give the POS NZ shooter what he wants,” Donald Trump Jr. wrote on Twitter. “Don’t speak his name don’t show the footage. Seems that most agree on that. The questions is can the media do what’s right and pass up the ratings they’ll get by doing the opposite? I fear we all know the answer unfortunately.”
During a press conference, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said: “Whilst I cannot give any confirmation at this stage around fatalities and casualties, what I can say is that it is clear that this is one of New Zealand’s darkest days.”
“Clearly, what has happened here is an extraordinary and unprecedented act of violence,” Ardern continued. “Many of those who will have been directly affected by this shooting may be migrants to New Zealand, they may even be refugees here. They have chosen to make New Zealand their home, and it is their home.”
“They are us. The person who has perpetuated this violence against us is not,” Arden added. “They have no place in New Zealand. There is no place in New Zealand for such acts of extreme and unprecedented violence, which it is clear this act was.”