Police hunt Linköping double killer

An eight year old boy and a 56 year old woman were murdered on Tuesday morning in Linköping. They were both stabbed by an unknown attacker on a street in the centre of the town while the boy was on his way to school and the woman was going to work.

The police were called to the scene at the corner of Karl Dahlgrensgatan and Åsgatan just before 8am. According to Expressen they first discovered the woman by a bush having been stabbed in the stomach. The boy lay fifteen metres away with a cut throat.

They were taken to the University Hospital in Linköping but the boy was dead on arrival. The woman died later as surgeons operated on her.

Witnesses told police that the killer “did not run but strolled away from the murder scene” and described him as being in his twenties, around 180cm tall, broad-shouldered and wearing a beige knee-length jacket and blue or black woollen hat.

Over a hundred police officers were brought into the investigation and a detailed search of the area revealed what is believed to be the murder weapon – a so-called butterfly knife – near the site of the murders.

“We are investing all the resources that we think we need to make a breakthrough,” said police inspector Lars Delleskog. “As things stand we are completely lacking a motive and it’s such an odd incident that we don’t dare to speculate on what’s happened.”

The boy, Mohamad Ammouri, was only a short way from his school when he was attacked. His brother, Ali, described a morning like any other:

“Mohamad overslept and got up at about quarter past seven. He was worried about being late for school. My mum prepared a simple breakfast which he ate before he took his schoolbag and ran off.”

Mohamad Ammouri’s 13 year old sister Iman followed him shortly after. She saw a commotion in the street and a body lying in the road but was prevented by police from getting close enough to see who it was. Soon after the school rang the family to ask why Mohamad hadn’t arrived.

“Just after nine we found out that our son had been killed,” said Mohamad’s father. “He was radiantly happy and loved to joke with people. Why would anyone want to kill him? We have no enemies in the whole of Sweden.”

Anna-Lena Svenson, the 56 year old woman who was also killed, was only 25 metres from her apartment block on her way to her job in central Linköping where she worked for an educational company. Doctors at the University Hospital in Linköping operated on her for several hours but she died around lunchtime on Tuesday.

Her 55 year old husband and 28 year old daughter were informed soon after.

The victims did not know each other and a “source” told Svenska Dagbladet that police believe there is no connection between the killer and either of his victims. On Wednesday police were saying openly that the attacker could be psychologically disturbed.

Inspector Tommy Håkansson, who is leading the investigation, admitted on Wednesday morning that the police still had no suspect.

“No, not yet,” he told the local media. “It’s probably someone mentally sick or someone who thinks they have another reason for the killings.”

The majority of the media seemed to follow this theory and all of the papers reminded readers that if this indeed is the case then it is the sixth such random incident in the past eighteen months.

In May 2003 a man was killed and six others injured when a 32 year old man went berserk with a sword in Stockholm. A couple of weeks later a 50 year old homeless man drove a car at high speed down a pedestrian street in Stockholm’s Old Town killing two and injuring sixteen others.

On September 10th 2003 foreign minister Anna Lindh was stabbed to death by Mijailo Mijailovic and the following day she died, along with a five year old girl who was stabbed by a 24 year old man in a separate incident.

And in February this year a 44 year old man apparently randomly attacked a 50 year old man in Stockholm’s Södermalm. The 50 year old was seriously injured and his assailant has been sentenced to life imprisonment.

Police press officer Pia Thevselius acknowledged that parents and the public in Linköping are deeply concerned that the killer is still on the loose in their neighbourhood. But she could offer them little comfort.

“We have a man out in town who has murdered two people,” she said. “To some extent you have to make your own decisions about safety and whether you will stay indoors until we arrest the attacker.”

Sources: Dagens Nyheter, Svenska Dagbladet, Expressen, Aftonbladet