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A new mother was forced to throw her bleeding baby into a stranger’s arms as she tried to escape a rampaging knifeman who murdered her and five others in a Sydney shopping centre on Saturday before being shot dead.

Dr Ash Good, a 38-year-old osteopath, was strolling through Westfield shopping centre in Bondi with her nine-month-old daughter when the attacker, who has not been named, started to stab people.

The man attacked Good’s daughter in her pram before turning his knife on the mother, the Australian Telegraph reported.

Suffering from multiple stab wounds, Good focused on saving her only child’s life by giving her to bystanders.

Good, described as a “beautiful, beautiful girl”, died from her wounds soon after arriving at St Vincent’s Hospital. Her daughter is undergoing surgery for stomach wounds.

“[Good] handed us the baby and said ‘please help, help’,” one of two brothers at the scene told Channel Nine. “She was bleeding from her head, her face … the baby was bleeding.”

“I was just holding the baby and trying to compress the baby. Same with the mother, [I was] trying to compress the [bleeding],” he told Nine News. “It looked pretty bad.”

“We just kept yelling out to get some clothes to help us compress and stop the baby bleeding,” the other brother said.

The man said he used shirts to try to staunch the flow of blood. “The mother, unfortunately, she started to have a lot of blood come from her mouth.”

Andy Reid, a Bondi lifeguard, immediately went into rescue mode and ran down an escalator to help Good.

“I just saw this empty pram. I’ve got three young kids and I just thought, ‘Oh my God’,” he said.

He also tried to do compressions and was soon joined by paramedics.

Paramedics quickly attended the scene

Paramedics quickly attended the scene – DAVID GRAY

It was reported that Good took refuge with her baby and several others in a Tommy Hilfiger store, with staff locking the doors behind them while the knifeman continued his rampage.

Mr Reid said he had witnessed some “pretty gnarly stuff” during his 20 years as a lifeguard, but “nothing like” the “cowardly attack” at the shopping centre.

“It was carnage,” another witness said, as he described how the man started suddenly “stabbing people indiscriminately”.

People take refuge in a room inside the shopping centre

People take refuge in a room inside the shopping centre – UNPIXS

Good had recently returned to work after maternity leave.

Earlier on Saturday she had posted a video to her Instagram of her nine-month-old baby smiling and eating a snack in her car seat to the soundtrack of My Girl by The Temptations.

She had posted on LinkedIn a month ago how much she loved being a new mother.

“It’s not lost on me what a privilege it is to become a parent. And then to be gifted some extra time away from work to spend with your child … it’s very special.”

Her father, Kerry Good, is a former Australian Rules footballing great who played for North Melbourne in the VFL from the late 1970s.

Laura Jayes, a presenter on Australia’s Sky News reporting from the scene, paid a tribute to her friend live on air.

“She was so smart. She was an athlete, she was clever and then she found the love of her life and had a baby late in life and that was her miracle baby,” she said.

Miracle baby

“A mother would never hand over her baby unless she had to and these were desperate, desperate times. And there you have it,” she said.

New South Wales Police Commissioner Karen Webb told a press conference: “The last update I had was that [the baby] had been in surgery and it’s too early to say really. But it’s awful.”

The killing spree in the packed and hugely popular mall close to the famous Bondi beach left five women and a man dead and eight injured.

Police have ruled out terrorism as a motive if the suspect is formally identified as the 40-year-old man they believe him to be.

The suspect was shot dead

The suspect, believed to be a 40-year-old man who was known to police, was shot dead

“He is known to law enforcement but we are waiting to identify him formally,” Commissioner Webb said of the lone attacker

She added, “Let me assure you that we are confident there is no ongoing risk and we are dealing with one person who is now deceased.”

He was eventually killed by a female police officer who was in the vicinity.

“She is certainly a hero. There is no doubt that she saved lives through her action,” Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said.

“For all of us tonight, the devastating scenes of Bondi Junction are beyond words or understanding,” he added.

The King has said he and the Queen were “utterly shocked and horrified” by the “senseless attack” in Sydney and their “hearts go out to the families and loved ones of those who have been so brutally killed”.

“Our thoughts are with all those affected, including the loved ones of those lost and the heroic emergency responders who risked their own lives to save others,” the Prince and Princess of Wales said.

Australia has been shocked at the rare outburst of violence. The country enacted strict gun laws after a man killed 35 and wounded another 23 in 1996, in Tasmania.

“[The attacker] was walking really calmly like he was having an ice cream in a park. And then he went up the escalators … and probably within about a minute we heard three gunshots,” another witness told the broadcaster.

“They just said run, run, run – someone’s been stabbed.”

Several other people intervened to try to stop the attacker and help the injured.

Footage posted online showed a male shopper on an escalator confronting the assailant with a bollard. The man was lauded on social media as a “brave Australian”.

“I saw this one guy fighting with the killer,” 19-year-old Rashdan Aqashah, who was working in clothing store COS, said.

A supervisor of a luggage store in the centre said he witnessed the attacker stab a woman and saw the bodies of four people on the ground, including two security guards.

Yohan Francois Philip, 29, said that a woman fleeing the attacker ran to his shop, “banged on the door and said let me in”.

He added: “As I was letting her in, the perpetrator fell behind her with a knife and I saw him and so did the other customers in the store locked in with us and so we quickly pulled her in, locked the door, he got up and we realised he just stabbed two security guards.

“Then he ran across to the corner part of the luggage store, to the premium section, and he stabbed a woman which I saw happen right in front of me.”

Carlos Ferras, 32, was with his girlfriend when he saw a crowd running towards him.

He said, “I started looking into the crowd trying to understand the commotion and very soon realised there was a guy following them with a quite long knife.

Mr Ferras, a software engineer based in Sydney, added: “I took my girl and led her towards the mall entrance while keeping an eye on the guy and it was at that moment that I saw him stabbing a lady – he pretty much stuck the full knife into her stomach.”

“We made it out but outside was as crazy as inside, people running in all directions,” he added, “I felt powerless, I had the guy in front me, alone, saw him taking the life of someone else, and wasn’t able to do anything.”

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