16 year old charged with knife murder

A 16 year old boy who was arrested on Sunday for the murder of a 14 year old on Saturday night in Sollentuna has been charged and remanded in custody.

Monday’s papers reported that a conflict between immigrants in the area and local neo-Nazis was behind the killing, but police sought to play down the speculation.

The 14 year old, James Waite, was among 30 youngsters aged between 14 and 18 who had congregated in a waterside barbecue area near Norrviken in Sollentuna. According to Aftonbladet, “some of the people at the party had xenophobic views and wore typical skinhead clothes like bomber jackets, bleached jeans, boots and braces. Several of the boys also had shaved heads.”

At around 9.30pm a group of youths “with immigrant backgrounds” arrived at the area, known as ‘the bay of love’. Patrick Andersson, 14, told Aftonbladet that they immediately singled James – who was also dressed in the skinhead style – out from the crowd.

“The immigrants went straight up to James Waite and asked him ‘Are you racist or Nazi?’ There were many who were dressed like him but they went straight for him.”

Andersson described how the gang then punched and kicked James Waite to the ground, screaming, “you’re going to die”. In the melee, the 16 year old allegedly pulled out a knife and stabbed James in the chest. He died in an ambulance on the way to Karolinska hospital.

Monday’s Dagens Nyheter explained that police arrested the 16 year old after gathering information from several witnesses.

The 16 year old’s lawyer, Hans Ahlstedt, told Expressen that he is a “well-adjusted guy”.

“He gets on well in school and plays football in his free time,” he said. “He is no different to my own children.”

While Ahlstedt painted a rosy picture of his client, Stockholm police attempted to dampen early speculation that the murder was race-related.

“Throughout Sunday we have been able to get a better picture of what happened,” said Mats Nylén, a Stockholm police spokesman, to DN.

“We have interviewed a lot of witnesses. The investigators emphasise that at the moment there is nothing to indicate that this could have been a racist murder.”

But his words were undermined by the news that a number of racist groups have already described James Waite as “a martyr”. And according to Stockholm’s Metro, between 250 and 400 right-wing extremists took part in a demonstration in Sollentuna on Sunday afternoon.

The demonstration was apparently calm, but afterwards a small group attacked a 23 year old man “of foreign appearance” outside a restaurant in the centre of Norrviken.

In Wednesday’s Aftonbladet, James Waite’s family distanced themselves from the “right-wing extremists trying to exploit our child’s tragic death for their own ends”.

They explained that their son had “no racist views at all” and that the clothing was just a phase.

“He was a normal teenager, in the middle of the time when you’re looking for an identity. He often changed his clothing style.”

Sources: Dagens Nyheter, Expressen, Aftonbladet, Metro


Attacker ‘severely disturbed’ during stabbing at Swedish political festival

Theodor Engström, the 33-year-old man who stabbed psychiatrist Ing-Marie Wieselgren to death at the Almedalen political festival in July, was seriously psychiatrically disturbed at the time of his attack, forensic psychiatrists have ruled.

Attacker 'severely disturbed' during stabbing at Swedish political festival

According to the Hela Gotland newspaper the Swedish National Board of Forensic Medicine has ruled that the man was so disturbed at the time of his attack he had lost the ability to understand the consequences of his actions, and has as a result recommended that he be given psychiatric treatment rather than a prison term.

The agency said that Engström had still been disturbed at the time he was given psychiatric assessment, and warned that there was a risk that Engström would commit further criminal acts. 

“This is a question which has relevance at a future stage,” said prosecutor Henrik Olin. “It means he cannot be sentenced to jail, but will instead receive psychiatric care. But it is not going to change how the investigation is carried out.” 

READ ALSO: What do we know about the Almedalen knife attack?

Engström stabbed Wieselgren, who worked as psychiatric coordinator for the Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions, as she was on the way to take part on a discussion at the Almedalen political festival. She died in hospital later that day. 

Engström has admitted to carrying out the attack, telling police that he intended to make a protest against the state of psychiatric healthcare in Sweden.