No murder conviction for Kungsgatan death

Three men have been found not guilty of the murder of Marcus Gabrielsen on Kungsgatan in central Stockholm at the beginning of May.

One, aged 18, was found guilty of serious assault and sentenced to a year in prison, while a 19 year old, who was found to have assaulted Marcus Gabrielsen’s friend, was given a suspended sentence. A third was cleared of all charges.

The prosecutor, Anne-Marie Bergström, argued that they should be found guilty of murder or of causing another person’s death, and given sentences of between six and eight years.

But her case was undermined by a lack of technical evidence and by the fact that several witnesses changed their stories during the trial, or simply “forgot” what had happened.

Gabrielsen and a friend are said to have been chased after asking one of the attackers not to urinate in a doorway on the street.

They ran from one side of the street to the other, where Gabrielsen was either brought to the ground or fell, hitting his head on a concrete wall. Witnesses told police that they saw several men kicking and hitting Gabrielsen as he lay on the ground.

Despite the fact there were many people on Kungsgatan at the time, nobody came to Gabrielsen’s aid and he was left unconcious. He died in hospital two days later.

The 18 year old admitted kicking Gabrielsen in the stomach but denied targeting his head. There was no forensic evidence linking him to the attack.

Evidence from 16 witnesses was heard by the court but several gave substantially different accounts to what they had said to police at the time.

During police interviews a young woman told how she had heard one of the defendents say how he had “kicked and jumped on a guy’s head”. But in the trial she said she no longer remembered this.

Peter Lindqvist, the lawyer defending the 18 year old, told Dagens Nyheter that the fact that the witnesses changed their story would have significantly weakened the prosecutor’s case.

“It made no difference for my client, since he admitted,” he said.

“But for the others it could have played a part.”

Sources: Dagens Nyheter, Svenska Dagbladet, Expressen


Swedish opposition proposes ‘rapid tests for ADHD’ to cut gang crime

The Moderate Party in Stockholm has called for children in so called "vulnerable areas" to be given rapid tests for ADHD to increase treatment and cut gang crime.

Swedish opposition proposes 'rapid tests for ADHD' to cut gang crime

In a press release, the party proposed that treating more children in troubled city areas would help prevent gang crime, given that “people with ADHD diagnoses are “significantly over-represented in the country’s jails”. 

The idea is that children in so-called “vulnerable areas”, which in Sweden normally have a high majority of first and second-generation generation immigrants, will be given “simpler, voluntary tests”, which would screen for ADHD, with those suspected of having the neuropsychiatric disorder then put forward for proper evaluations to be given by a child psychiatrist. 

“The quicker you can put in place measures, the better the outcomes,” says Irene Svenonius, the party’s leader in the municipality, of ADHD treatment, claiming that children in Sweden with an immigrant background were less likely to be medicated for ADHD than other children in Sweden. 

In the press release, the party said that there were “significant differences in the diagnosis and treatment of ADHD within Stockholm country”, with Swedish-born children receiving diagnosis and treatment to a higher extent, and with ADHD “with the greatest probability” underdiagnosed in vulnerable areas. 

At a press conference, the party’s justice spokesman Johan Forsell, said that identifying children with ADHD in this areas would help fight gang crime. 

“We need to find these children, and that is going to help prevent crime,” he said. 

Sweden’s climate minister Annika Strandhäll accused the Moderates of wanting to “medicate away criminality”. 

Lotta Häyrynen, editor of the trade union-backed comment site Nya Mitten, pointed out that the Moderates’s claim to want to help children with neuropsychiatric diagnoses in vulnerable areas would be more credible if they had not closed down seven child and youth psychiatry units. 

The Moderate Party MP and debater Hanif Bali complained about the opposition from left-wing commentators and politicians.

“My spontaneous guess would have been that the Left would have thought it was enormously unjust that three times so many immigrant children are not getting a diagnosis or treatment compared to pure-Swedish children,” he said. “Their hate for the Right is stronger than their care for the children. 

Swedish vocab: brottsförebyggande – preventative of crime