Update after horror stabbing at Centrelink office

A woman is fighting for her life after being stabbed at a Centrelink office. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Emma Brasier

A woman is fighting for her life after she was allegedly stabbed multiple times at a Centrelink office in Melbourne’s north.

Witnesses reported hearing screaming coming from the storefront at Westfield in Airport West about 1.30pm on Tuesday.

Victoria Police say a 55-year-old was rushed to hospital with “life-threatening injuries”, while a man, 34, was taken into custody nearby.

The 34-year-old Essendon man was later on Tuesday charged with intentionally cause serious injury, recklessly cause serious injury, reckless conduct endangering life, common law assault and use and possession of controlled weapon.

He will appear at Melbourne Magistrates Court on Tuesday evening.

Supplied Editorial Car drives into police
The incident occurred at Westfield shopping centre in Airport West. Picture: Supplied.

An Ambulance Victoria spokeswoman said one woman was taken to the Royal Melbourne Hospital with “upper body injuries”.

“Investigators have been told a man attacked a woman at a business on Louis Street about 1.30pm,” Victoria Police said in a statement.

“A crime scene has been set up while police work to establish the circumstances surrounding the incident.”

Network Ten reported the woman is a team leader at Centrelink and the man was allegedly a client.

Isabella Piller, who was working nearby at the time, said she heard children screaming.

“I heard a lot of children screaming which made my heart drop,” she told 7NEWS.

“I genuinely thought something really bad was happening.”

Services Australia General Manager Hank Jongen said it was a very sad day for staff and customers.

“This is a very sad day for our agency and our staff who come to work every day to support Australians,” Mr Jongen said.

“They should be free to do their job without concern for their personal safety.”

He said Services Australia is supporting staff and customers.

“Our hearts are with the injured service officer and their loved ones. Thankfully, they are in a stable condition and receiving the best possible care. “

Anyone who witnessed the incident or has information is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or submit a confidential report online at www.crimestoppersvic.com.au.