The identity of the suspect behind a vicious stabbing attack at an Indian restaurant in Cambridge, New Zealand has been revealed due to a lapse in name suppression.
Matthew Richard Nelson, a male who identifies as a woman named Emma, appeared in Hamilton District Court on May 5. Nelson’s name had previously been withheld from the public, but has now been revealed as the case has gone to court and name suppression has not been re-applied.
Nelson is accused of stabbing three victims with a knife at the Sahara India Restaurant on May 4. One of the victims, a female, was Nelson’s former partner. A police summary of the incident that was presented to the Hamilton District Court said the attacker acted in a “quick and aggressive manner.”
Nelson had entered through the rear door of the Indian restaurant and stabbed a male staff member in the shoulder as he worked in the kitchen.
Another worker, a female, has been confirmed as Nelson’s ex-partner. Nelson slashed her in the face and stabbed her in the upper back, causing her to suffer a punctured lung. She is currently hospitalized at Waikato Hospital in critical condition, with reports stating she has blood in her chest cavity.
A customer who attempted to intervene and save the two was similarly attacked, losing over a liter of blood after he sustained an injury to his abdomen.
Nelson then grabbed a chair, which he used to smash the restaurant’s front windows, and fled.
While being forensically swabbed in police custody by a doctor, Nelson is alleged to have remarked: “this is a bit excessive for only stabbing three people.”
Details on the motive for the attack are not currently known.
Nelson is charged with three counts of wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, and one of causing willful damage. He has yet to enter his plea and is scheduled to appear in court again on May 18.
In local media coverage, outlets referred to Nelson using ‘she/her’ pronouns, with other sources referring to the attack as being the fault of a ‘woman.’
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