Man arrested after three injured during attack at Auckland restaurants

Three people are injured after a "crazy rampage assault" where diners at three Albany restaurants were allegedly attacked by a man with an axe on Monday night. 

Police said officers were called to Corinthian Dr in Albany just after 9pm after a person entered three restaurants and "struck customers with a weapon".

Newshub understands this weapon may have been an axe. Photos from the scene on Monday night showed a large police presence outside a taped-off restaurant.

A police spokesperson told Newshub three people were taken to hospital with injuries ranging from serious to moderate.

Man arrested after three injured during attack at Auckland restaurants
Photo credit: Google Maps

In an update on Tuesday morning, Acting Det Insp Timothy Williams of Waitematā said a 24-year-old man was arrested at the scene.

He will appear in the North Shore District Court on Tuesday morning - charged with wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

Police said further charges are expected.

Man arrested after three injured during attack at Auckland restaurants
Photo credit: Newshub

In an update at 11am on Tuesday, Waitematā East Area Commander Inspector Stefan Sagar said police will continue to have a highly visible presence in the Albany area.

"We acknowledge how frightening this incident was for those involved, and for the wider community, and we are ensuring there is support in place for both the victims and their friends and family," Sagar said.

"We are reassuring the public there is no further risk to the public in relation to this incident and Police have no evidence to suggest this is a racially-motivated attack."

Sagar confirmed the man is appearing in the North Shore District Court on Tuesday morning.

"Our Ethnic Liaison Officers are in the area and will be available to speak to the communities impacted by this incident," Sagar said.

The three people injured in the attack remain in hospital and there will also be support in place for them, Sagar said.

Witnesses described the ordeal as "scary" and one person saying he blocked an attack from the man involved.

One witness described the scenes as a "crazy rampage" - saying the assailant was carrying a "massive hammer".

Baffin Wong, who was dining in one of the restaurants, told AM he didn't initially know the scale of the attack.

"I was just having dinner with my friends and I saw a guy walk in with a massive hammer, one of those demonstration ones," he said. "I wasn't paying attention until I saw a full-blown swing on a guy, so I just went up to him, and he was saying how someone beat him up."

An axe was spotted at the scene last night.
An axe was spotted at the scene last night. Photo credit: Supplied

The attacker eventually left the restaurant, Wong said.

"We locked the door, put a table behind the door [and] did first aid on the guy on the floor."

Wong described the man who was assaulted as having two "massive wounds" on the back of his head. 

"I didn't realise it was a serious crazy rampage assault, I thought it was just a retaliation, like beef... someone came to give another guy a hiding but that was crazy, with like a massive f**king hammer," Wong said. 

"They were just having dinner on their phones, they didn't even know the guy behind them. I wasn't paying attention till I was like f**k, shit, is this happening? He didn't have a swing at me but he looked at me like he almost recognised me."

Man arrested after three injured during attack at Auckland restaurants
Photo credit: Newshub

The witness told AM he had feared for his safety, which was why he kept away from the assault. 

"I'm shocked because this could've happened to anyone. I could've been hit with that 30-pound hammer," he said.

"It just shocks me how things can happen." 

Another witness told NZ Herald he was having dinner with a friend when the man walked in carrying an axe. 

"He walked in and hit my friend. He was the first target," he said.

"I'm slightly injured. My friend got seriously injured. Only two of us got injured in our restaurant, but [there were] more wounded in the other restaurants."

The witness suffered injuries on both of his hands after blocking an attack from the man involved.

The witness said he was in "shock" when he realised the attacker was about to target him.

"I blocked his axe with my hand. He was also trying to target my head - so I blocked the axe with my hand."

The witness said the attacker then chased him and his friend out of the restaurant.

"When he realised he can't catch us, he just turned around and went into another restaurant and kept attacking.

Another witness told RNZ a man had attacked patrons in the three restaurants with weapons including an axe.

The witness told RNZ the man attacked her friend, who was in the Maya Hotpot restaurant, from behind with an axe. Her friend was injured and taken to hospital.  

Williams said their initial investigations suggest this is an isolated attack. No one else was being sought in relation to the attack, he said.

AM reporter Emma Olsen said two police officers remain at the scene on Tuesday morning.

Officers have cordoned off three restaurants - including Zhang Liang Malatang, Yue's Dumpling Kitchen and Maya Hotpot.

"We can see in  Zhang Liang Malatang... that there are still noodles all across the ground. We've seen some tissues with blood on them," Olsen said.

Man arrested after three injured during attack at Auckland restaurants
Photo credit: Newshub

Police said officers will be present in the area on Tuesday morning as a wider scene examination is conducted.

Williams any witnesses to get in touch with the police.

"Additionally, if you have footage of the incident, please contact 105 quoting reference number 230620/0005 and the investigation team will be in touch. Information can also be provided anonymously via Crime Stoppers on 0800 555 111."