Swedish doc accuses police of misconduct

Police officers who investigated a doctor accused of the manslaughter of a baby at a Stockholm hospital last year are now themselves facing a misconduct probe over the way they handled the doctor after she was arrested.

Swedish doc accuses police of misconduct

The officers allegedly failed to tell the paediatrician of the nature of the accusations against her and acted in a threatening manner at the time of her arrest.

“One of them snapped at me saying that I should not act as though I didn’t know what it was about, after having done what I did,” she told the the Läkartidningen medical journal .

The three-month-old baby was born prematurely, unconscious and with serious brain damage, and died in September of 2008 shortly after her birth.

The paediatrician was then charged with manslaughter, suspected of deliberately having administered a high dose of the anaesthetic Pentothal in combination with morphine, in order to speed up the baby’s death.

A lengthy and complicated investigation started, and on October 21st 2011 the doctor was unanimously acquitted by the Solna District Court.

The doctor’s complaints have now been taken up by prosecutors.

Chief Prosecutor Håkan Roswall at the National Prosecution Authority (Åklagarmyndigheten) said to the journal that they are currently investigating the police on six specific points.

In addition to failing to inform her of the accusations and acting in a threatening matter, the doctor complained that police confiscated some of her belongings but never gave her an official list of the things they had appropriated.

She is also very critical of the way police and pathologists in the case have speculated publicly about medical treatments, how medical journals are kept and how specific drugs are administered, outside of their fields of expertise, which became evident from a tape which was released some time into the investigation, according to the journal.

If the police officers are found to be guilty of misconduct, they could face hefty fines or up to two years in prison.

Prosecutors say the volume of evidence – the case file runs to over a thousand pages – means it may take months to establish what charges, if any, can be made against the officers.

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Swedish police deliver baby in back seat of car

Two Swedish police officers assisted in a very special roadside delivery over the weekend when they helped a mum give birth to a baby girl in the middle of the night.

Swedish police deliver baby in back seat of car
This is not the baby in the story. Photo: Jurek Holzer/SvD/SCANPIX

Police officer Petter Kesselmark described the unusual incident which saw him and his colleague Stina Strömberg flagged down by a nervous soon-to-be dad at a roundabout in Norrköping, eastern Sweden, in the early hours of Sunday.

“There was a car parked on the roadside and a man was waving frantically at us. The back door was open and I said to my colleague: do you think there's a birth about to happen?” he told regional newspaper Corren.

But the pair quickly sprang into action when they realized that was in fact the case.

“There were only minutes left so my colleague took care of the woman and we came up with a blanket, while I talked to the emergency services and a midwife on the phone and could pass on that everything was cool and all we had to do was receive the child,” said Kesselmark.

The healthy baby girl was born inside the car at 12.07am. An ambulance which arrived at the scene minutes later took the mother and the newborn to hospital for a check-over.

A while later they got a visit from their unexpected helpers.

“They were so happy and we felt honoured to have been part of this and to have shared it with them. We walked around with big smiles on our faces later, said Kesselmark.