School attack: Teen held on suspicion of injuring two in southern Sweden

Swedish media report that a boy suspected of trying to kill a student and teacher in the town of Kristianstad has links to a similar school attack last summer.

School attack: Teen held on suspicion of injuring two in southern Sweden
Police outside a school in Kristianstad, southern Sweden, where a student and teacher were injured in a knife attack. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Police were alerted to the school in the town of Kristianstad shortly after 9am on Monday, after receiving a report that at least one person had received injuries from a knife.

“He entered our classroom with a speaker playing music and a black ‘corona mask’. At first we thought it was a prank,” an unnamed student told newspaper Dagens Nyheter.

The assailant then turned towards the teacher and “started kicking”, the student said, adding that the class then started running out of the building.

Just seven minutes after the initial call, the police were able to arrest the suspect in a “relatively undramatic” way, local police chief Anders Olofsson told reporters.

A teacher, aged 55, and another student, aged 16, were injured in the attack.

The teacher’s injuries were “mild”, while the student’s injuries were described as “severe,” according to a statement published by regional health authority Region Skåne.

Police said the arrested suspect was born in 2005 and was being held suspected of attempted murder.

Later in the afternoon, broadcaster TV4 reported that the case had a connection to another similar attack in the town of Eslöv, about 50 kilometres southwest of Kristianstad, in August when a student with Nazi sympathies attacked a 45-year-old school employee.

According to TV4, the Eslöv attacker and the suspect in Kristianstad “knew each other, had been in touch with each other over the internet and shared an interest in school attacks”.

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Attacker ‘severely disturbed’ during stabbing at Swedish political festival

Theodor Engström, the 33-year-old man who stabbed psychiatrist Ing-Marie Wieselgren to death at the Almedalen political festival in July, was seriously psychiatrically disturbed at the time of his attack, forensic psychiatrists have ruled.

Attacker 'severely disturbed' during stabbing at Swedish political festival

According to the Hela Gotland newspaper the Swedish National Board of Forensic Medicine has ruled that the man was so disturbed at the time of his attack he had lost the ability to understand the consequences of his actions, and has as a result recommended that he be given psychiatric treatment rather than a prison term.

The agency said that Engström had still been disturbed at the time he was given psychiatric assessment, and warned that there was a risk that Engström would commit further criminal acts. 

“This is a question which has relevance at a future stage,” said prosecutor Henrik Olin. “It means he cannot be sentenced to jail, but will instead receive psychiatric care. But it is not going to change how the investigation is carried out.” 

READ ALSO: What do we know about the Almedalen knife attack?

Engström stabbed Wieselgren, who worked as psychiatric coordinator for the Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions, as she was on the way to take part on a discussion at the Almedalen political festival. She died in hospital later that day. 

Engström has admitted to carrying out the attack, telling police that he intended to make a protest against the state of psychiatric healthcare in Sweden.