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RISING VIOLENCE IN MALMÖ

CRIME

Police ’embarrassed’ by continued violence

Police in Malmö say they see no clear connection between Tuesday's fatal shooting and the later bombing of a police station but that they are “embarrassed and irritated” that crime has continued to rise despite a recent increase in police presence.

Police 'embarrassed' by continued violence

“The entire Swedish police force stands behind Malmö. We have received reinforcements and continue to work under previous guidelines,” said Hans Nordin of the Skåne Police to news agency TT.

On Tuesday night at 7pm, an emergency call was made to alert police that a 48-year-old man had been shot in his car. He died shortly after in hospital.

Later on at 2.30am, a bomb exploded at a nearby police station. The explosion caused extensive damage to the building, although no one was injured.

Police are now actively searching for clues that will lead to arrests, yet have stressed the importance of witnesses coming forward with information about both events.

“It’s important that those who know anything dare to come forward. We protect our witnesses,” said Börje Sjöholm of the Malmö police to TT news agency.

While the bombing of the police station has not been connected by police to the murder, they have labelled the attack as a possible retaliation to their increased attention to crime fighting, particularly in their search for illegal weapons.

This extra police attention has resulted in more violence, with three people being fatally shot only in January this year. Police have been questioned as to whether the additional policing has been a failed crime-fighting attempt.

“No, it’s no failure. But it is very embarrassing that another murder has occurred, and very irritating that we couldn’t do anything to prevent it,” said Nordin to TT.

Ilmar Reeplau, the Malmö mayor, was livid after Tuesday’s turn of events, and also claimed that not enough was being done in the fight against crime.

“It’s bloody awful. We have had a massive police operation on Malmö’s streets, but the violence is only continuing,” he said to the Sydsvenskan newspaper after a visit to the crime scene on Tuesday.

The incident on Tuesday night marks the eighth fatal shooting in the city since May.

“The Swedish law system is being ignored and is not respected any longer,” he said to the Skånska Dagbladet newspaper.

Sweden’s minister for justice, Beatrice Ask, has called for more police in Malmö and has launched an investigation into what many believe to be outdated weapons laws, yet mayor Reepalu, who supported the idea, claimed that more still needs to be done.

“Customs must also get better resources to stop the flow of illegal weapons. The legislation for illegal weapons dates back to the 60s. We must have a modern laws, ”Reepalu told TT.

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ALMEDALEN 2022

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. 

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