A university student, reportedly of Somalian descent, drove a car into a crowd of people at the Ohio State University on Monday morning and injured 11 by stabbing them with a butcher knife before he was shot and killed within minutes by a police officer.
Abdul Razak Ali Artan was from Somalia and a lawful permanent resident of the United States, a US government official told the media. Investigators believed that he was a Somali refugee as Columbus, the capital of Ohio, has a strong Somali population.
Artan, who was a third-year transfer student studying logistics management, appeared to have carried out the possible terror attack on his own.
"It bears the all of the hallmarks of a terror attack carried out by someone who may have been self-radicalised," US Congressman Adam Schiff, a California Democrat and the ranking member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, said in a statement, adding that intelligence agencies were assisting in the investigation.
Agencies are investigating the background and motives of the attacker, but it still remains unclear as to why he carried out the attack and whether he had any links with any militant cells or organisations, a US official told Reuters.
The incident, which lasted just a few minutes, triggered panic among the students with most of them reporting it as an incident involving an "active shooter" and hiding in bathrooms before the university was declared secure.
According to Columbus fire officials, 11 people were being treated at area hospitals with one of them critically injured.
Chief medical officer Dr. Andrew Thomas told Reuters that six victims, two with stab wounds and three with wounds from being hit by the car, were being treated at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. He added that five other patients with lacerations and injuries were sent to two different hospitals.