‘It really wasn’t that brutal’: murder suspect

A young man suspected of beating a 54-year-old Swedish school teacher to death in April tried to downplay the severity of the fatal assault in testimony on the second day of the against the three young adults who stand charged with the killing.

‘It really wasn’t that brutal’: murder suspect

“It really wasn’t as brutal as it sounds,” said the murder suspect when he described the assault that led to the death of teacher Tommy Johansson, who was found beaten to death in his apartment in Hofors in eastern Sweden.

The two men and one woman are charged with the crime are all in their early twenties.

One of the men has been charged with murder, while the woman has been charged with murder and an alternative charge of being an accomplice to murder. The second man has been charged with being an accomplice to murder as well as with protecting a criminal.

The three suspects had visited a pizzeria in Hofors on April 3rd where they ran into Johansson, who had been one of the woman’s favourite teachers in high school.

When the trio left the restaurant, the woman told her two male friends that Johansson had groped her and touched her breasts. Her boyfriend reacted violently, and found out where the teacher lived.

Once he’d found the address, the three broke into Johansson’s apartment.

There they beat Johansson, subjecting him to severe and prolonged assault that verged on torture, according to prosecutors.

The three suspects also stole a computer as well as Johansson’s cash card before leaving the scene.

Part of the assault has been documented, as one of the men brought out his mobile phone camera to record the proceedings.

The 20-year-old woman testified on Tuesday that when she took her boyfriend to her teacher’s house she had only intended for them to “talk”.

“I thought I’d just let him know he had done a bad thing,” she said while interrogated.

But according to the woman, her boyfriend, who is now facing murder charges, beat the teacher to the ground. While sitting down on top of him, he proceeded to punch the man in the face three times.

“And that was when I kicked him in the side of his abdomen and in the groin,” said the woman and burst into tears.

Crying, she then continued telling how the 20-year-old man continued his assault on the teacher by hitting him in the stomach and then jumping on both his chest and his head, all the while being filmed with a mobile phone camera.

Unlike the woman, the male murder suspect didn’t show any emotion. He accounted for what he had done that evening, denying having urged his girlfriend and the other man to come with him to the teacher’s house.

When the trio had trouble getting the 54-year-old’s door open, the man was close to giving up his plans to attack the teacher.

“I wasn’t going to bother. But then I changed my mind and made another attempt and managed to break the glass,“ he said in court.

The 20-year-old retold how he then assaulted the Johansson.

“I jumped on his chest, not from up high, it was more to make my point. I did that twice,” he said.

He also claimed to know from previous experience with violence what kind of consequences different levels of abuse could have and that this assault really wasn’t as brutal as it sounds.

“Sure, you probably shouldn’t jump on people but I did and it was just a stupid thing to do,” he said to the court.

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Swedish opposition proposes ‘rapid tests for ADHD’ to cut gang crime

The Moderate Party in Stockholm has called for children in so called "vulnerable areas" to be given rapid tests for ADHD to increase treatment and cut gang crime.

Swedish opposition proposes 'rapid tests for ADHD' to cut gang crime

In a press release, the party proposed that treating more children in troubled city areas would help prevent gang crime, given that “people with ADHD diagnoses are “significantly over-represented in the country’s jails”. 

The idea is that children in so-called “vulnerable areas”, which in Sweden normally have a high majority of first and second-generation generation immigrants, will be given “simpler, voluntary tests”, which would screen for ADHD, with those suspected of having the neuropsychiatric disorder then put forward for proper evaluations to be given by a child psychiatrist. 

“The quicker you can put in place measures, the better the outcomes,” says Irene Svenonius, the party’s leader in the municipality, of ADHD treatment, claiming that children in Sweden with an immigrant background were less likely to be medicated for ADHD than other children in Sweden. 

In the press release, the party said that there were “significant differences in the diagnosis and treatment of ADHD within Stockholm country”, with Swedish-born children receiving diagnosis and treatment to a higher extent, and with ADHD “with the greatest probability” underdiagnosed in vulnerable areas. 

At a press conference, the party’s justice spokesman Johan Forsell, said that identifying children with ADHD in this areas would help fight gang crime. 

“We need to find these children, and that is going to help prevent crime,” he said. 

Sweden’s climate minister Annika Strandhäll accused the Moderates of wanting to “medicate away criminality”. 

Lotta Häyrynen, editor of the trade union-backed comment site Nya Mitten, pointed out that the Moderates’s claim to want to help children with neuropsychiatric diagnoses in vulnerable areas would be more credible if they had not closed down seven child and youth psychiatry units. 

The Moderate Party MP and debater Hanif Bali complained about the opposition from left-wing commentators and politicians.

“My spontaneous guess would have been that the Left would have thought it was enormously unjust that three times so many immigrant children are not getting a diagnosis or treatment compared to pure-Swedish children,” he said. “Their hate for the Right is stronger than their care for the children. 

Swedish vocab: brottsförebyggande – preventative of crime