Was Nazareth Restaurant Machete Attack Inspired by ISIS?

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A man holds his machete as young people, who created a self-defence committee for their district Benz-vi, met before leaving for a patrol in their district, on March 12, 2014 in Bangui. (SIA KAMBOU/AFP/Getty Images)

Police are investigating slain suspect Mohamed Barry of Thursday’s machete attack against an Israeli Christian-Arab in Columbus, Ohio as possibly being inspired by the Islamic State.

According to CNN, Barry, a 30-year-old man of Somalian origin, stormed the restaurant and stabbed four people. NBC Columbus reports that the “four people were taken to the hospital with injuries, including one person who was taken to Grant Medical Center in life-threatening condition.” The latter has since been downgraded to stable.

While trying to flee, Barry was shot and killed by police.

“(He) immediately began swinging a machete at customers and employees inside,” Columbus police Sgt. Rich Weiner told CNN. “There was no rhyme or reason as to who he was going after as soon as he walked in, according to some of the witnesses.”

Federal investigators are now investigating to see if Barry was inspired to commit a “lone wolf” attack by the Islamic State, reports Fox 8 Cleveland.

ISIS internet channels have made no comment on the attack but it carries similarities to the San Bernardino shooting at the Inland Regional Center in early December. CNN reports that Barry was seen entering the restaurant 30 to 45 minutes and speaking to an employee prior to attacking it.

Syed Farook, one of two ISIS-inspired Americans who carried out the shooting in California, similarly visited the crime scene before leaving and returning with his wife, Tashfeen Malik, and weapons.

However, the investigation with Barry is ongoing.

Find more ISIS news, photos and videos here.

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