The mother of a terrorist shot dead after randomly stabbing passers-by on Sunday said he was once a “nice, polite boy”.
Haleema Faraz Khan said her son Sudesh Amman had called her only hours before the attack.
She had visited him at his Streatham bail hostel on Thursday and he called her hours before the attack in Streatham High Road at 2pm on Sunday.
Amman was under police surveillance when he stabbed two people while wearing a fake suicide vest before he was shot dead by officers.
She said he became radicalised after watching Islamic material online and also in Belmarsh prison in Thamesmead, where he was serving time for terrorism-related offences.
Ms Khan told Sky News that when she first heard an attack had happened she “had a feeling” Amman, the eldest of four brothers, was responsible because it was in South London. She tried to call him after hearing of the attack but he did not respond.
She told Sky: “He was watching and listening to things online which brainwashed him. Before he went to prison he was not that religious. After he came out he was really religious.
“He was a polite, kind, lovely boy. He was always smiling. I’m so upset, he was only 20 years old.”
Amman was jailed for three years and four months in December 2018 for possessing and distributing terrorist documents. He had been released after serving half his sentence.
One of the properties being searched by police is a three-storey bail hostel in Leigham Court Road, Streatham, where Amman had been living since his release.
Police confirmed at 3.52pm on Sunday that they shot dead Amman at 2pm, in a terrorist-related incident. He was wearing a fake bomb device.
He stabbed two people before armed officers shot him. A man whose life was in danger has now been taken off the life-threatening injuries list.
A third person also received minor injuries – believed to have been caused by glass following the discharge of the police firearm.
Lucy D’Orsi, the Met’s deputy assistant commissioner for specialist operations, said on Sunday night: “We would like to thank the numerous members of the public who assisted officers and ambulance staff. I am also extremely proud of the bravery of our armed officers.”
A nurse who saw what happened told the Telegraph: “A man just went into a shop and took a knife and started stabbing people.
“The shopkeeper tried to get the knife away from him but he got away and stabbed a woman on a bicycle.”
Another eyewitness said: “One woman was stabbed in the back and one man was stabbed in the stomach.
“The man was in a bad way. People were screaming ‘stay with us’. The police arrived and we heard ‘bang bang bang’. I saw the attacker lying down face down.”
Dave Chawner tweeted: “I had to stay with someone who’d just been stabbed in Streatham for 30 minutes before a single ambulance arrived.
“I’m just over 1 mile from a hospital – I’m not having a go at anyone, but that’s not right. I just hope he made it.”
But an LAS statement said: “We can confirm that our medics arrived in four minutes, and were initially directed to a rendezvous point until the police confirmed it was safe for them to approach patients.”
Good Morning Britain host Susanna Reid said: “So this happened right on my doorstep. I saw the police helicopter up in the air and then we realised something was happening – went on to social media and of course then discovered this was happening just a couple of minutes away from where I live.
“This is the Odeon cinema – that’s where we go to watch films.”
At the end of a speech on trade at Greenwich’s recently-restored Painted Halls of the Old Royal Naval College, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said yesterday, the government was “bringing forward legislation to stop the system of automatic early release”.
He added: “We do think it’s time to take action, to ensure that people in the current stream do not qualify automatically for early release.”
Pictured: One of the properties being searched by police is a three-storey bail hostel in Leigham Court Road, Streatham, where Amman had been living since his release (Picture: PA)