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CRIME

Teen murder suspect taken to mental clinic

A 16-year-old girl suspected of plotting the murder of a 15-year-old girl last weekend in Stureby south of Stockholm has been moved to a psychiatric clinic, much to the dismay of her attorney.

Teen murder suspect taken to mental clinic

“We had created an appropriate environment with ample resources for her up at the Kronoberg detention centre and I think that moving her again is unfortunate. The fewer changes the better,” said attorney Jan Karlsson to the TT news agency.

Following a visit with his client at the detention centre on Thursday night, however, Karlsson admitted his client was not well, although he denied media reports alleging she had attempted suicide.

“As I understand it, the reason for the move was her general condition,” he said.

Karlsson said no further interrogations of his client were planned this week.

The girl, along with her 16-year-old boyfriend, has been held since their arrest last Sunday morning following the killing of 15-year-old Therese Johansson Rojo.

The boyfriend has been remanded in custody on suspicion of murder, while the girl is suspected of incitement to commit murder.

The relocation of the girl comes after she suffered what is being described in the Swedish press as a breakdown during an interrogation when she was presented with evidence from mobile phone text messages which connect her to the killing.

Prosecutors believe the 16-year-old girl convinced her boyfriend to kill Johansson Rojo after learning that the 15-year-old had flirted with her boyfriend at a party earlier in the spring.

The incident, which friends characterized as “an innocent flirt” causing the 16-year-old to fly into a jealous rage, the Expressen newspaper reports.

The boyfriend has admitted that he killed the girl during a party near a wooded hillside in Stureby late Saturday night, while his girlfriend has admitted to sending the text messages.

“She has admitted to sending text messages with certain contents, but she denies committing any crime,” Karlsson told Expressen.

“She had no criminal intent.”

An attorney for the boyfriend, Claes Borgström, said he expects the boy will be questioned further early next week.

According to prosecutor Karolina Lindekrantz, the murder of Johansson Rojo had been hard to fathom, but relatively straight forward to investigate from a legal perspective.

“We think all of this is totally surreal. How can someone plan a crime like this and then keep the text messages? Something must have happened in their relationship which caused them to lose touch with reality,” she told TT.

Police and prosecutors have gained access to more than 20 text messages sent between the two suspects in which they plan the crime.

Investigators are now trying to determine whether or not they can recover any additional text messages which may have been erased.

Lindekrantz is also waiting for information from the coroner about how exactly Johansson Rojo died.

“I’m going to receive the autopsy report on Monday afternoon. We’re not looking for a murder weapon,” she said.

At the weekend, prosecutors plan to hold a series of more in-depth interviews with several of the young people who were present at the picnic area the night of the killing but weren’t in the company of the two suspects.

Lindekrantz said she doesn’t expect the investigation into the murder of Johansson Rojo to be finished before the end of August.

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CRIME

Sweden breaks yearly record for fatal shootings

A man was shot to death in Kristianstad, Skåne, late on Thursday night. He is the 48th person to be shot dead in Sweden this year, meaning that the previous record for most fatal shootings in one year set in 2020 has now been broken.

Sweden breaks yearly record for fatal shootings

“Unfortunately we can’t say more than that he’s in his twenties and we have no current suspects,” duty officer Mikael Lind told TT newswire.

According to police statistics, this most recent deadly shooting means that 48 people have been shot to death in 2022, meaning that Sweden has broken a new record for deadly shootings per year.

Earlier this week, Sweden’s police chief Anders Thornberg said that this number is likely to rise even higher before the end of the year.

“It looks like we’re going to break the record this year,” he told TT on Tuesday. “That means – if it continues at the same pace – around 60 deadly shootings.”

“If it ends up being such a large increase that would be very unusual,” said Manne Gerell, criminiologist at Malmö University.

“We saw a large increase between 2017 and 2018, and we could see the same now, as we’re on such low figures in Sweden. But it’s still worrying that it’s increasing by so much over such a short time period,” he said.

There also seems to be an upwards trend in the number of shootings overall during 2022. 273 shootings had occured by September 1st this year, compared with 344 for the whole of 2021 and 379 for the whole of 2020.

If shootings continue at this rate for the rest of 2022, it is likely that the total number for the year would be higher than 2021 and 2020. There are, however, fewer injuries.

“The majority of shootings cause no injuries, but this year, mortality has increased substantially,” Gerell explained. “There aren’t more people being shot, but when someone is shot, they’re more likely to die.”

Thursday’s shooting took place in Kristianstad, but it’s only partially true that deadly gun violence is becoming more common in smaller cities.

“It’s moved out somewhat to smaller cities, but we’re overexaggerating that effect,” Gerell said. “We’re forgetting that there have been shootings in other small cities in previous years.”

A report from the Crime Prevention Council (Brå) presented last spring showed that Sweden, when compared with 22 different countries in Europe, was the only one with an upwards trend for deadly shootings.

Temporary increases can be seen during some years in a few countries, but there were no countries which showed such a clear increase as Sweden has seen for multiple years in a row, according to Brå.

The Swedish upwards trend for deadly gun violence began in the beginning of the 2000s, but the trend took off in 2013 and has continued to increase since.

Eight of ten deadly shootings take place in criminal environments, the study showed. The Swedish increase has taken place in principle only among the 20-29 year old age group.

When police chief Anders Thornberg was asked how the trend can be broken, he said that new recruitments are one of the most important factors.

“The most important thing is to break recruitment, make sure we can listen encrypted and that we can get to the profits of crime in a better way,” he said.

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