A man who was previously convicted of terrorism and pledged allegiance to ISIS killed a French police commander and his partner at their home in Magnanville in an horrific attack France’s president says was “incontestably” a “terrorist act.”
Larossi Abballa, 25, posted video of the killing online during the rampage, referencing the so-called Islamic State, The Guardian reports.
The officer was named as Jean-Baptiste Salvaing. His partner has not yet been identified, but she was also a police employee.
Abballa, who was born in France and called himself Mohamed Ali on Facebook, was killed in a SWAT raid that saved the slain couple’s 3-year-old son, who was being held hostage inside the home, authorities said.
The attack came as France hosts the 2016 UEFA European Championship soccer tournament and is in a heightened state of security as a result. The country has been under a state of emergency since the November 2015 attacks in Paris by ISIS terrorists.
Magnaville is west of Paris.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Abballa Livestreamed the Killings on Facebook & Told His Followers ‘I Don’t Know What I’m Going to Do With the Boy’
Abballa live streamed the attack on Facebook Live. The video and his Facebook page were deleted, but it has been distributed online by ISIS propagandists.
In the 12-minute video he expressed his allegiance to ISIS and its leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. At one point in the video, Abballa referenced the police officer’s 3-year-old son, who he was holding hostage.
“I don’t know what I’m going to do with the boy,” Abballa said. Police later raided the home, killing Abballa and saving the boy.
2. A List of Targets, Including Other Police Officers, Politicians & Journalists, Was Found at Abballa’s Home
Police found a list of targets, including other police officers, politicians and journalists, at Larossi Abballa’s home in Mantes-la-Jolie, a suburb of Paris, Prosecutor Francois Molins said at a press conference.
Three knives used in the attack were found at the police officer’s home.
In his video, he urged more attacks by French Muslism, according to SITE. He said, “”kill them even if their name is Mohammad or Aisha,” SITE says.
3. He Was Sentenced to 3 Years in Prison for the Prior Terrorism Conviction & Was on a Watch List
Abballa was sentenced to three years in prison for “criminal association in view to preparing terrorist attacks,” for recruiting jihadis to Pakistan and Afghanistan, The Guardian reports.
He was 20 at the time of that 2011 conviction and was released from prison in September 2013.
Abballa was more recently investigated by French authorities and was on a watch list, according to officials. He was being monitored for being part of the entourage of a French man who had recently traveled to Syria.
4. An Official ISIS News Agency Called Abballa an ‘Islamic State Fighter’
In a statement, the ISIS Amaq news agency said “Islamic State fighter kills deputy chief of the police station in the city of Les Mureaux and his wife.”
The phrasing of the statement is similar to one posted after the terrorist attack in Orlando, Florida. In both messages the killer was referred to as an “Islamic State fighter.”
In Orlando, the FBI is investigating whether gunman Omar Mateen had any official ties to ISIS. Like Abballa, Mateen pledged allegiance to ISIS during his attack at Pulse, a gay nightclub. Mateen killed 49 people and wounded 53 others before he was shot dead during a police raid.
5. Salvaing Was a Commander & His Partner Worked as a Secretary at a Police Headquarters
Jean-Baptiste Salvaing, 42, was a police commander in the city of Les Mureaux, according to officials. His 36-year-old partner, who has not been named, worked as a secretary at a police headquarters.
He was not in uniform when he was ambushed at about 8:30 p.m. Monday, Fox News reports.
“The toll is a heavy one,” Interior Ministry spokesman Pierre-Henry Brandet told reporters.
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