A man allegedly armed with a “six-inch knife” has been shot by police at a shopping centre in Melbourne’s outer east.
Police were called to Lilydale Marketplace in Hutchinson St about 8.30am on Tuesday after reports of a man armed with a weapon.
“A police firearm was discharged and the man received an injury to the upper body,” a spokesman said.
A woman called 3AW radio just after 9am on Tuesday morning before multiple gunshots were heard ringing out over the call.
Caller Pauline said three police officers had their guns drawn outside Lilydale Marketplace and were yelling at the man to put the knife down.
She said police also had pepper spray drawn.
She said the man was wandering around the street allegedly holding a knife but did not appear to be waving it.
She said he refused to put the weapon down and after about five minutes two or three shots could be heard coming from the carpark of the shopping centre near the Caltex service station.
“Oh s**t they’re shooting,” a distressed Pauline said just seconds after gunshots could be heard in the background of her call.
“They’ve just shot. I can’t see if they’ve shot him … there’s just been three or four rounds … a lot of police are scurrying around now, not in any particular formation.”
Pauline mentioned an ambulance had moved in and officers had started to set up police tape when the call finished.
One local business owner, who did not want to be named, said the man looked calm as he interacted with police.
“There was a guy near the chemist and the medical centre with a knife, he seemed calm, lighting up cigarette after cigarette,” he told NCA Newswire.
The witness said the knife looked about six inches long.
He said it went on for about 15 to 20 minutes before the man walked over past the service station towards the high school.
“He was holding the knife up, it looked like he was waving it around, whether or not he was pointing it at himself, I’m not sure,” he said.
“The cops kept backing up, saying put the knife down, put the knife down.
“He started walking back towards the marketplace. At that point you could hear the police voices really getting raised, he went behind the service station and we couldn’t see him, but at that point we heard what sounded like three pops.
“That’s when the ambulance came in.
“He seemed quite calm, just had the knife the whole time and police were keeping their distance, it didn’t look like he was lunging at them in any way but in that last moment of 15 to 20 seconds I’m not sure what happened, that’s when we lost visual.
“To me he didn’t show any aggression towards the police, what he was saying I don’t know.”
Local cafe worker Vishal Vishal said a customer alerted him to the shooting just outside the shopping centre.
He said he saw an ambulance drive the man over to the school oval across the road where he was loaded into a helicopter and flown to hospital.
“There were three helicopters circling and heaps of police,” he said.
Ambulance Victoria said paramedics were called to the scene about 8.45am.
“A man, believed to be in a serious condition, is being treated for upper body injuries,” a spokesman said.
The man was put in an air ambulance, which left to transport him to hospital just after 10.15am.
Special operations police remain on scene with Hutchinson St blocked to traffic.