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CRIME

Father gets 18 years for killing 7-year-old son

A 53-year-old man who stabbed his 7-year-old son to death in Umeå, in northern Sweden, was convicted on Wednesday to 18 years in prison for murder and unlawful coercion.

Father gets 18 years for killing 7-year-old son

During the trial, the man had confessed to causing the boy’s death but was adamant that it was aggravated assault and manslaughter.

According to the man he didn’t know what he was doing when he attacked the boy at home in their apartment on July 10th.

However, according to daily Expressen, the man had cleaned the blood off his knife and off himself directly after killing his son.

The man waited until his wife left for work, then pushed his mother-in-law out of the front door, locked it and attacked his young son with a knife.

According to the forensic investigation the boy had been fatally stabbed 17 times as he lay bleeding on the kitchen floor. At the same time the father had tried to suffocate him with his other arm.

Police were called to the flat in the Tomtebo area in Umeå on the evening of July 10th, where they found the boy’s lifeless body.

The father was placed under arrest immediately after the incident and remained in custody on suspicion of murder.

Later, unlawful coercion was added to the charges, due to the manhandling of the grandmother, as the man manouevered her out of the apartment and stopped her from reentering the flat.

The prosecution argued that the murder had been planned in advance. The apparent motive for the crime was a wish by the man to reclaim the power he felt he had lost to his wife.

Defence lawyer for the father, Jonas Wiklund, said in his closing statment that it had not been the 53-year-old’s intention to kill the 7-year-old boy but just to beat him up in order to frighten his wife and mother-in-law.

Although the little boy’s mother had previously reported her husband for violent behaviour and threats, the 53-year-old had had never been charged with any crime.

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CRIME

Sweden breaks yearly record for fatal shootings

A man was shot to death in Kristianstad, Skåne, late on Thursday night. He is the 48th person to be shot dead in Sweden this year, meaning that the previous record for most fatal shootings in one year set in 2020 has now been broken.

Sweden breaks yearly record for fatal shootings

“Unfortunately we can’t say more than that he’s in his twenties and we have no current suspects,” duty officer Mikael Lind told TT newswire.

According to police statistics, this most recent deadly shooting means that 48 people have been shot to death in 2022, meaning that Sweden has broken a new record for deadly shootings per year.

Earlier this week, Sweden’s police chief Anders Thornberg said that this number is likely to rise even higher before the end of the year.

“It looks like we’re going to break the record this year,” he told TT on Tuesday. “That means – if it continues at the same pace – around 60 deadly shootings.”

“If it ends up being such a large increase that would be very unusual,” said Manne Gerell, criminiologist at Malmö University.

“We saw a large increase between 2017 and 2018, and we could see the same now, as we’re on such low figures in Sweden. But it’s still worrying that it’s increasing by so much over such a short time period,” he said.

There also seems to be an upwards trend in the number of shootings overall during 2022. 273 shootings had occured by September 1st this year, compared with 344 for the whole of 2021 and 379 for the whole of 2020.

If shootings continue at this rate for the rest of 2022, it is likely that the total number for the year would be higher than 2021 and 2020. There are, however, fewer injuries.

“The majority of shootings cause no injuries, but this year, mortality has increased substantially,” Gerell explained. “There aren’t more people being shot, but when someone is shot, they’re more likely to die.”

Thursday’s shooting took place in Kristianstad, but it’s only partially true that deadly gun violence is becoming more common in smaller cities.

“It’s moved out somewhat to smaller cities, but we’re overexaggerating that effect,” Gerell said. “We’re forgetting that there have been shootings in other small cities in previous years.”

A report from the Crime Prevention Council (Brå) presented last spring showed that Sweden, when compared with 22 different countries in Europe, was the only one with an upwards trend for deadly shootings.

Temporary increases can be seen during some years in a few countries, but there were no countries which showed such a clear increase as Sweden has seen for multiple years in a row, according to Brå.

The Swedish upwards trend for deadly gun violence began in the beginning of the 2000s, but the trend took off in 2013 and has continued to increase since.

Eight of ten deadly shootings take place in criminal environments, the study showed. The Swedish increase has taken place in principle only among the 20-29 year old age group.

When police chief Anders Thornberg was asked how the trend can be broken, he said that new recruitments are one of the most important factors.

“The most important thing is to break recruitment, make sure we can listen encrypted and that we can get to the profits of crime in a better way,” he said.

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