Stolen elk mystery baffles Swedish police

Police in northern Sweden are puzzled after a dead elk on the side of the road was stolen before it could be collected by authorities.

Stolen elk mystery baffles Swedish police

The elk was hit by a motorist on a road near Arvidsjaur, far northern Sweden, in the early hours of Wednesday morning.

“Someone called the police to say they’d hit an elk with their car and that the elk was dead,” Anna-Lena Hesse, head of information at the Norrbotten police, told The Local.

“We sent out the hunters but they were unable to locate the body. The conclusion was that the elk was stolen.”

SEE ALSO: In pictures: See what happened when The Local visited a Swedish elk safari

While Hesse admitted the case was “rather unusual”, speculation has been running rife back at police headquarters in Norrbotten.

“Someone suggested that the thieves wanted the body for the meat, but the meat is probably no good anyway after the accident. Someone else speculated that the thieves may have taken the elk meat to use as carrion, but who knows for sure?” Hesse said.

Hunting license holders value an elk at around 7,000 kronor ($1,040), according to the TT new agency.

With no witnesses or leads, police have had to close the case.

“However, we can always reopen it if anyone knows anything, and residents shouldn’t hesitate to contact us if they know anything. But for the meantime, we see no possibility in solving this case,” Hesse told The Local.

“We have more important cases to solve, anyway.”

RELATED STORY: Is it an elk or a moose? The mystery explained.

Oliver Gee

Follow Oliver on Twitter here

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.


Calls for special police tactics to be available across Sweden

The chairwoman of the Police Association West Region has said that police special tactics, known as Särskild polistaktik or SPT, should be available across Sweden, to use in demonstrations similar to those during the Easter weekend.

Calls for special police tactics to be available across Sweden

SPT, (Särskild polistaktik), is a tactic where the police work with communication rather than physical measures to reduce the risk of conflicts during events like demonstrations.

Tactics include knowledge about how social movements function and how crowds act, as well as understanding how individuals and groups act in a given situation. Police may attempt to engage in collaboration and trust building, which they are specially trained to do.

Katharina von Sydow, chairwoman of the Police Association West Region, told Swedish Radio P4 West that the concept should exist throughout the country.

“We have nothing to defend ourselves within 10 to 15 metres. We need tools to stop this type of violent riot without doing too much damage,” she said.

SPT is used in the West region, the South region and in Stockholm, which doesn’t cover all the places where the Easter weekend riots took place.

In the wake of the riots, police unions and the police’s chief safety representative had a meeting with the National Police Chief, Anders Tornberg, and demanded an evaluation of the police’s work. Katharina von Sydow now hopes that the tactics will be introduced everywhere.

“This concept must exist throughout the country”, she said.

During the Easter weekend around 200 people were involved in riots after a planned demonstration by anti-Muslim Danish politician Rasmus Paludan and his party Stram Kurs (Hard Line), that included the burning of the Muslim holy book, the Koran.

Police revealed on Friday that at least 104 officers were injured in counter-demonstrations that they say were hijacked by criminal gangs intent on targeting the police. 

Forty people were arrested and police are continuing to investigate the violent riots for which they admitted they were unprepared. 

Paludan’s application for another demonstration this weekend was rejected by police.

In Norway on Saturday, police used tear gas against several people during a Koran-burning demonstration after hundreds of counter-demonstrators clashed with police in the town of Sandefjord.