Danish mall shooting suspect had mental health issues: Police

Danish mall shooting suspect had mental health issues: Police

Police confirmed that the suspected shooter was present in the mall at the time of shooting.

Copenhagen:

Danish police said on Monday that suspects in a weekend shooting at a Copenhagen mall that killed three people, including two teenagers, were known to mental health services.

“Our suspect is also known among psychiatric services, beyond which I do not wish to comment,” Copenhagen Police Chief Soren Thomasson told a news conference.

Thomson said it appeared the victims were randomly targeted and there was nothing to indicate that it was an act of terror.

“Our assessment is that the victims were random, that it is not motivated by gender or anything else,” Thomson said.

The police chief could not yet comment on a motive, but said it appeared that preparations were made before the attack and that no one else assisted the 22-year-old suspect.

“As things stand, it was as if he was acting alone,” he said.

The three killed have been identified as a Danish teenager and boy, both aged 17 years and a 47-year-old Russian national who lives in Denmark.

Four others were injured in the shooting: two Danish women aged 19 and 40, and two Swedish nationals, a 50-year-old male and a 16-year-old female.

Police confirmed that the suspected shooter was present at the mall at the time of the shooting and is known to police “but only peripherally”.

He said he believed the videos of the suspect doing the rounds on social media since Sunday evening are authentic.

‘Sufficiently psychopathic’

In some images, the young man can be seen posing with arms outstretched, imitating suicidal gestures and talking about psychiatric medication “that doesn’t work”.

AFP said the suspect’s YouTube and Instagram accounts were shut overnight.

The shooting took place on Sunday afternoon at the busy Fields shopping mall, located between the city center and Copenhagen airport.

According to police, the shooter was armed with a rifle, a pistol and a knife, and while the guns were not considered illegal, the suspect did not have a license for them.

Eyewitnesses quoted by Danish media described how the suspect had tried to mislead people by saying that his weapon was fake so that they could contact him.

“He was psychopathic enough to hunt and hunt people, but he wasn’t running,” an eyewitness told public broadcaster DR.

Other eyewitnesses told Danish media that they saw more than 100 people running towards the exit of the mall as the first shots were fired.

Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen condemned the “brutal attack” in a statement late Sunday.

“Our beautiful and usually so safe capital was replaced in a second,” she said.

Two people have been killed and 21 others injured after a gunman opened fire near a gay bar in Oslo, neighboring Norway.

In February of 2015, two people were killed and five were injured in Copenhagen in a series of Islamism-inspired shootings.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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Indian Lekhak

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