Man jailed over Stockholm subway attack on mum

Man jailed over Stockholm subway attack on mum
Commuters using the Stockhom metro on a separate occasion. Photo: Hasse Holmberg/SCANPIX
A man who pushed and spat at a mum trying to stop him from stealing from a woman in Stockholm's Old Town has been locked up for two months over the high-profile assault.

The 21-year-old was arrested by police in Stockholm last month after security cameras captured the moment when the mother, accompanied by two young children, tried to stop a man from pickpocketing in one of the Swedish capital's tourist hotspots.

On Monday a court sentenced him to two months in prison.

The suspect was tracked down following video footage from the incident going viral and even grabbing global headlines. In the clip, first shared by Swedish tabloid Aftonbladet, a man was seen approaching a woman in her sixties just after she rummaged in an open bag and started using her mobile phone, while she was walking up a flight of stairs at the Gamla Stan (Old Town) metro station.

The younger woman described in court how she was concerned about his behaviour and approached him, but said he then turned on her, pushing her in the face before spitting at her.

“He is so angry, and I get so scared for the children. How am I going to protect the children? Is he carrying a knife? (…) I remember my head hurt for days after this,” she was quoted by the Expressen tabloid as telling the trial.

The man was found guilty on two counts, including assault and molestation. However, he escaped punishment over a third theft charge for trying to steal from the older woman.

“The court finds that he had not got so far that he had started to carry out aggravated theft. You can have different opinions about that, I argued that it had been initiated,” prosecutor Hans Ransholm told the Aftonbladet newspaper after the sentencing.

The man's lawyer could not say immediately after the trial whether his client, who has consistently denied he is the same individual shown in the security camera footage, would attempt to appeal the verdict.