A man and a woman were wounded in a shooting at a mall in the southern city of Malmo on Friday, with the man eventually succumbing to his injuries, the police said in a statement, adding that the woman was receiving medical treatment.
Everything indicated that the 31-year-old man was the intended target of the shooting, Petra Stankula, Malmö chief of police, said at a police press conference about the shooting on Saturday morning, Swedish newswire TT reported.
The woman who was seriously injured was “probably just a passerby”, Stankula added.
According to Swedish daily Dagens Nyheter, the dead man was the leader of a criminal gang in Malmö.
Over the last 12 months, several explosions and shootings have been linked to a conflict between the gang and another network.
“Firing in shopping mall is absolutely pitiless with a total disregard for others’ lives,” Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson told a press conference while on the campaign trail in Malmo.
Police earlier said they had arrested the suspected shooter – a 15-year-old boy – in the incident in the southern city of Malmo.
They ruled out a possible “terrorist” motive and said the shooting appeared to be “an isolated incident connected to criminal groups”.
However, they said others may be involved in the crime, but at the moment only the boy is a suspect, Dagens Nyheter said.
Local media quoted eyewitnesses as saying the suspect had shot indiscriminately into the crowd, but the police did not confirm this.
“We believe that the immediate danger is now over,” a police spokeswoman said.
According to Swedish newswire TT, the police declined to give any further information about the suspect or whether they were already known to the police.
On Friday evening, people gathered outside the emergency room at Skåne University hospital where there was a large police presence.
Train traffic was also halted after the incident and, at the time of writing, no trains were stopping at Hyllie station, which serves the shopping centre, one of Scandinavia’s largest.
The shopping centre itself would be closed on Saturday, but crisis managers would be on site offering support to anyone who needed it, Per Erik Ebbeståhl, security manager for the city of Malmö, said at Saturday’s police press conference.
In July, three people were killed in a shooting in a shopping mall in the Danish capital of Copenhagen, around 30 kilometres (18 miles) from Malmo.
Crime has become an important issue weeks ahead of elections.
Sadly, 2022 is on track to becoming a record year for shootings in Sweden – from January to May, more than 30 people were shot dead in Sweden.
In the same period in previous years, there has been an average of 17 fatal shootings.