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State Funeral Offered For Bourke Street Victim

The family of a popular Melbourne restaurateur who was killed in the Bourke Street terror attack has been offered a state funeral as the city continues to mourn the tragedy.

Hundreds of flowers and cards line the footpath outside of Pellegrini's restaurant as staff let mourners know the tributes would be passed on to the family of Sisto Malaspina.

The 74-year-old man was walking down Bourke Street, just a few hundred metres from the business he had run for more than 40 years, when he was caught up in the horrific attack.

Premier Daniel Andrews spoke to the family of Mr Malaspina and offered a state funeral.

Tasmanian businessman Rod Patterson and a 24-year-old security guard were also injured in the attack.

Hassan Khalif Shire Ali, a 30-year-old known to authorities for his radical views, parked a four-wheel drive laden with gas cylinders on Bourke Street on Friday and stabbed three men, killing one.

However the family of the attacker have said the man had mental health problems in a note to reporters.

"Hassan suffered from mental illness for years and refused help. He's been deteriorating these past few months," a note given to the Nine Network showed.

"Please stop turning this into a political game. This isn't a guy who had any connections with terrorism but was simply crying for help," it read.

Shire Ali was shot in the chest by a police officer he threatened with a knife and died in hospital.

Federal police said the attacker had his passport cancelled in 2015 amid fears the Somali-born man would go to Syria.

Lifeline 13 11 14

beyondblue 1300 22 4636


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