France: Woman Stabbed in the Back in ‘Random’ Attack

Police and emergency services intervene on Place Gutenberg after a shooting on December 11, 2018 in Strasbourg, eastern France. - The suspect who killed at least two people and injured 11 at Strasbourg's Christmas market was due to be arrested by police earlier in the day over a separate attempted …

An unknown perpetrator stabbed a 23-year-old woman in the back outside a French railway station in what is being described as a random act of violence.

The incident took place at around 6 p.m. on Tuesday in the city of Massy outside of Paris. A man had snuck up to the woman and stabbed her in the back after she had been shopping at the near the Massy-Palaiseau RER station.

According to the victim, her attacker made “incomprehensible remarks” before fleeing the scene on foot, according to Actu17.

“She received a single stab in the lumbar area of the spine, in the lower back,” a police source told Le Parisien, confirming that she required hospital treatment.

The attacker remains at large, and a source close to the investigation said that so far a terrorist motive is not being considered.

According to the newspaper, the attack comes nearly four years after a similar incident in front of the RER station when a young man was stabbed for refusing to give the perpetrators his mobile phone.

Random acts of violence, known as “violences gratuites” in France,  have become common across France, with a 2018 report claiming that the country sees as many as 777 random acts of violence every day.

Another similar stabbing attack took place in September at the Gare du Nord railway station in Paris and saw a man randomly attack another man sitting on a bench waiting for a train.

The man, described as European by some and Asian by others, stabbed the victim in the neck in what also appeared to be a random act of violence.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)


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