British counter terrorism police are leading the probe into the killing of Conservative MP Sir David Amess on Friday to determine if the attack was terrorism-related.
Amess was attacked and stabbed several times at a constituency open meeting held at the Belfairs Methodist Church in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex.
Police said on Friday that emergency services arrived at the church within minutes, but Amess died at the scene from “multiple injuries.”
A 25-year-old man was taken into custody at the location on suspicion of the murder, and he remains in custody. A knife that is presumably the murder weapon was also recovered at the site.
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Tory MP David Amess dies following knife attack at constituency meeting in Essex church, suspect arrested
The investigation remains in its “very early stages,” but is being led by specialists from the Counter Terrorism Command, who will determine if the killing should be deemed an act of terrorism.
“It will be for investigators to determine whether or not this is a terrorist incident but as always they will keep an open mind,” Essex Police Chief Constable Ben-Julian Harrington told reporters.
Police do not believe there is any immediate threat to anyone else in the area at this time, Harrington added.
In the wake of the politician’s death, Home Secretary Priti Patel has ordered police review security measures in place for all MPs, due to the fact that Amess was stabbed at a surgery where MPs can meet in person with their constituents, with a spokesperson promising “immediate effect” and updates on new measures “in due course.” He was the second serving MP to be killed in the space of five years, after Labour MP Jo Cox was stabbed to death in June 2016 shortly before she was to hold a planned constituency surgery.
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