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Woman who came to aid of Countdown stabbing victim says attack was 'relentless'

A woman was inside a Dunedin Countdown where four people were stabbed yesterday says she doesn’t think the man would have stopped if bystanders hadn’t restrained him.

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Jenny McDowell had been at the Countdown store when the incident took place, leaving four people injured. Source: 1 NEWS

Jenny McDowell had been in the toiletries aisle when she heard screaming as a man repeatedly stabbed a Countdown employee.

“I kinda looked up and then realised that one of the staff members had been stabbed. He was just on top of her, stabbing her. She had blood around her face and I just kind of froze,” McDowell told 1 NEWS.

Four people were injured in the attack, including Countdown two staff members.

Three of the injured are in a serious but stable condition in hospital while the fourth is in a moderate condition.

Man taken into custody after stabbing attack at Dunedin Countdown store. Source: 1 NEWS

McDowell watched as two bystanders attempted to distract the attacker, who turned their focus on them.

She says the pair, a man and a woman, were both injured while trying to help. The man suffered wounds to his neck, while the woman was stabbed in the back.

Earlier today, a Corrections officer was identified as one of the people injured in the incident.

Other members of the public tried to pull the attacker off, doing anything they could to restrain him.

“They were amazing. They were heroes. They just pinned him down. One guy had a chair against him, using all his weight just to pin him down. Yeah, cause I don’t think he would have stopped if they hadn’t intervened.”

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Three victims remain in intensive care today following the attack yesterday afternoon. Source: Breakfast

McDowell applied first-aid to the man with the neck wound, using a reusable shopping bag and another employee’s jersey to apply pressure.

“We both tried to apply pressure and I was just reassuring the man that help was on its way. He kept saying 'my wife, my wife, how’s my wife.'”

“I’m feeling very grateful to be okay and just really concerned for the people that were injured and the Countdown staff and customers that witnessed such a horrible thing.”

A 42-year-old man is set to appear in the Dunedin District Court this afternoon on four counts of attempted murder.