Police bullet fragments kill Australian cafe hostage

An inquest into the Dec. 15 café siege in Sydney has revealed that one of the hostages was killed by fragments of a police bullet.

Jeremy Gormly, counsel assisting the New South Wales state coroner, said Katrina Dawson, 38, was hit by six fragments of a police bullet or bullets.

Gormly said that one fragment struck a major blood vessel, causing Dawson to lose consciousness quickly. She died not long after.

“I have a bomb”

Police stormed the Lindt Chocolat Café after Man Horan Monis, the gunman, shot and killed café manager Tori Johnson.

Monis entered the café with a sawed-off shotgun hidden in a plastic bag. Half an hour after placing his order, he asked to speak with the manager.

Once the doors were locked Monis stood up and announced, “This is an attack. I have a bomb,” a hostage said.

He then took 18 people hostage.

False claims

Monis ordered Tori to phone Australia’s emergency number and relay the following:
• Australia was under attack by Islamic State militants.
• Radio-controlled bombs were around the busy Sydney tourist precinct, Circular Quay and Martin Place.

They were false claims.

A parallel government inquiry into how Monis got his hands on a gun and why he was out on bail while facing charges of ‘accessory to murder’ of his ex-wife is being conducted. He was also facing more than 40 sexual assault charges.

A joint federal and New South Wales state investigation on why Monis was given asylum and eventually Australian citizenship is ongoing.

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