Monday, April 14, 2008

Swedish Murders Run Rampant

It hasn’t been an especially uplifting past few weeks in the news here in Sweden. The newspapers have been filled with murders. And not just any murders. The murder of children has dominated the media.

Most recent is the murder of a 10 year old girl who was on her way home from soccer. She was just a little ways away from home and had just called her mom on her cell phone. And she never made it. Turns out a 42 year old had “accidentally” (his lawyer’s term) killed her, hidden the body, and denied any knowledge of it. He later confessed, led them straight to the body, confessed to another murder, a rape attempt, and is being linked to at least one other murder. This along with some other crimes he had already been convicted for. Quite a nice burgeoning rap sheet. No word yet on if all of these were “accidental.”

Before that a one year old and a three year old were murdered while their mother was severely injured. It seems that a German woman with connection to the father of the children is behind that attack. Seems, not is, because of the whole innocent until guilty thing.

For some reason the murder of children always strikes a chord in any community. Something about the loss of innocence, the potential, the life not lived that really gets to people. And it’s understandable. Because to be able to kill someone that young takes a special kind of person. Special in a way that I can never understand. Special in a way that is horrifying. Special in a way that makes you question just how messed up people actually can be.

I love being in Sweden because of the reaction to this sort of thing. There is a sense of innocence and community throughout the country that just can’t be achieved very often in a place as big as the US. While sometimes misguided (like the woman who was out searching in the woods in southern Sweden while the girl had disappeared north of Stockholm) it is mostly a display of togetherness and faith in humanity. It speaks to the Swedish culture. It speaks to the smallness of this country. In a good way.

So as murder and crime dominate the news, I really hope Sweden keeps this sense of community that seems to stretch the entire country

Welcome to Sweden.


  1. I was waiting for you to write a post about these horrible events... Well said.

    And that guy's lawyer (Silbersky) is a real pig. I don't understand how you can accept being the lawyer of, and defending that guy. Then you just want the money.

  2. Oh HS, this is so horrible. In my mind, Sweden is a haven free of US-style crime. So sad.

  3. @isle dance - thanks

    @robban - yeah pretty mind boggling. DCP brought this up and the only thing I could think of is in defense of the lawyer that maybe he thinks his client is stark raving mad in which case he could use a good lawyer. otherwise I've got nothing. because to defend someone like this is just kind of sick.

    @carolyn - unfortunately no. Sweden is a haven from US-style gun crime definitely. But it seems that people always find a way to kill others.

  4. Well, honestly, I just think he's a pig. He, Leif Silbersky, is also currently the lawyer of the four teenagers who beat and kicked a teenager to death in Stockholm. Silbersy wants them freed from all accusations. One of his arguments was that the four teenagers shouldn't have to bear with themselves the knowledge that they're murderers all their lives.

  5. some people just struggle. my quetion is how he can live with those sorts of arguments on his conscience.