Sydney Cafe Siege: Three Dead in Standoff
Lone Gunman Identified as Man Haron Monis Pronounced Dead at Hospital, Along With Two Unnamed Hostages
By DANIEL STACEY, ROSS KELLY And DAVID WINNING
Updated Dec. 15, 2014 3:02 p.m. ET
SYDNEY—A siege that shut down a large part of central Sydney for more than 16 hours ended early Tuesday after two hostages and their armed captor were killed when police stormed the cafe behind a hail of bullets.
New South Wales police said the lone gunman was pronounced dead in the hospital following the shootout at the Lindt Chocolate Café in Sydney’s Martin Place district around 2:10 a.m. Two unnamed hostages, a 34-year-old man and a 38-year-old woman, were killed in the shootout, though police didn’t say whether the victims’ wounds came from the gunman or from police.
Andrew Scipione, New South Wales’s police commissioner, said officers stormed the building after hearing gunshots from inside. After hours of fruitless negotiations with the gunman, officers threw flash grenades and fired automatic weapons into the cafe.
Mr. Scipione said there were 17 hostages—many of whom escaped—at the cafe, a popular stop for office workers and shoppers. The crisis began around 9:45 a.m. Monday.
“Unbelievably overnight we have lost some of our own in an attack we would never think we would see in our city,” said Mike Baird, premier of New South Wales, Australia’s most populous state. “In the past 24 hours this city has been changed by a tragedy that none of us would have ever imagined.”