Sixth Westfield Bondi Junction stabbing victim named as Chinese student Yixuan Cheng

<span>Sydney stabbing: Chinese student Yixuan Cheng has been named as the sixth person killed by Joel Cauchi at Westfield Bondi Junction on Saturday.</span><span>Photograph: David Gray/AFP/Getty Images</span>
Sydney stabbing: Chinese student Yixuan Cheng has been named as the sixth person killed by Joel Cauchi at Westfield Bondi Junction on Saturday.Photograph: David Gray/AFP/Getty Images

Yixuan Cheng has been confirmed as the sixth person stabbed to death in Bondi Junction on Saturday in what police are now investigating as a murderous rampage possibly targeting women.

The Chinese national, a University of Sydney student who was in her 20s, was killed by a Queensland man, Joel Cauchi, at the shopping centre on Saturday afternoon alongside five others.

The New South Wales premier, Chris Minns, also announced on Monday $18m would be provided to the state coroner to undertake an independent inquiry looking into the police response, investigation and the interactions the killer had with government agencies.

“The people who have been killed were innocent people who had their entire lives ahead of them,” he said. “The community is devastated in the knowledge of their loss, whether we were personally known to those who were killed or not.”

The state government will also look at restrictions on security guards in major crowded centres, while ruling out changing any policies to allow them to carry firearms or stun guns.

University of Sydney’s vice-chancellor, Prof Mark Scott, said the university was working with the Chinese consulate and the student’s family.

Related: Bondi Junction mass stabbing attack: who are the six victims?

In an email to staff and students on Monday, Scott said he was “shocked and saddened” by the “senseless violence and loss of life that occurred” on Saturday afternoon.

“On behalf of the university, I extend my sincere condolences to the student’s family and friends,” he said, adding: “Please take time today to check in on each other, this is a deeply distressing time for our community and I encourage you to look after each other and access the support available.”

Wang Chunsheng, China’s acting consul general in Sydney, said he was “very sorry to hear about” Cheng’s death.

The consulate would be in contact with her relatives in China to make arrangements, Wang said. In similar cases in the past, Chinese relatives have been flown to Australia.

Anthony Albanese thanked the police who responded and paid tribute to those who had died.

“There’s no sense of anything other than randomness,” the prime minister told Kiis FM. “People going about their shopping and, in the case of Faraz Tahir, a gentleman who hadn’t been here that long, a refugee from Pakistan who was working as a security guard.”

On Sunday evening about a dozen people remained in hospital. Of those, eight were women. Four were released overnight and five remained on Monday morning.

The baby of Ashlee Good, a woman who was killed in the attack, was in a critical but stable condition in hospital on Monday morning.

Videos circulating online have shown Cauchi avoiding men and targeting women and children.

The NSW police commissioner, Karen Webb, told ABC News Breakfast that the videos “speak for themselves”.

“That’s certainly a line for inquiry for us,” she said. “It’s obvious to me, it’s obvious to detectives that seems to be an area of interest – that the offender had focused on women and avoided the men.

“Five of the deceased are women and the majority of victims in hospital are also women. We don’t know what was operating in the mind of the offender and that’s why it’s important now that detectives spend so much time interviewing those who know him, were around him and close to him.”

Early in the investigation police ruled out terrorism as a motive for the shocking attack.

Cauchi was diagnosed with serious mental health issues in his late teens and spent much of his adult life moving between shelters, hostels and living in his car. According to police, he arrived in Sydney last month from Queensland.

Albanese has thanked members of the public who tried to stop Cauchi as he roamed the centre with the large knife, and praised the work of the police officer who stopped him.

“It is remarkable that people ran towards danger in order to help their fellow Australians, not the least of which of course was police inspector Amy Scott,” he said.

Related: Joel Cauchi: who was the Queensland man who carried out the Bondi Junction mass stabbing?

The Westfield shopping centre has been handed back from police to its owners after processing the scene over the past two days, though it remains closed to the public.

“NSW police seized many, many exhibits from that crime scene,” Webb said.

“The job ahead of us now is to examine all those exhibits, as part of the evidence. Detectives will focus on interviewing family of the deceased, which will be a very slow, methodical process.”

She said overnight 50 more witnesses had come forward.

• In Australia, the crisis support service Lifeline is 13 11 14. In the UK and Ireland, Samaritans can be contacted on freephone 116 123, or email or In the US, you can call or text the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline on 988, chat on, or text HOME to 741741 to connect with a crisis counselor. Other international helplines can be found at