The alleged perpetrator of the Copenhagen shooting is committed to a closed psychiatric ward for 24 days. The Danish media reported unanimously from the hearing of the suspect on Monday. Thus, the suspect had to spend the pre-trial detention in the psychiatric ward.
The public prosecutor’s office in Copenhagen accuses the suspect of intentional killing and attempted killing. The 22-year-old Dane is accused of shooting dead three people and seriously injuring four others in a shopping center on Sunday evening.
“There is no evidence in the investigation, documents or testimonies that could prove that it is terrorism,” Chief Inspector Søren Thomassen said on Monday, according to TV2.
The shots were fired late Sunday afternoon in the Fields shopping center, which is located in the relatively new district of Ørestad in the south of Copenhagen, between the center of the Danish capital and the airport. According to eyewitness reports, panic broke out among the visitors. After the first shots, more than a hundred people fled the building.
The alleged perpetrator fired indiscriminately at people in two places. A 47-year-old man with Russian citizenship who lived in Denmark and two Danish 17-year-olds died.
The injured are a 40-year-old and a 19-year-old Danish woman and a 50-year-old man and a 16-year-old woman from Sweden, said the chief inspector. In addition, some people were slightly injured when they fled the mall in panic.
According to the chief physician of the Copenhagen hospital Rigshospitalet Kasper Claudius, three of the four injured are now out of danger. One person is still in critical condition, Claudius said at a press conference on Monday morning.
Chief Inspector Thomassen said the suspected shooter appeared to have acted alone. There is no evidence that the suspect had accomplices. The man had sought help in a psychiatric ward in the past. The police had previously searched an apartment in the Valby district of Copenhagen.
A former homicide chief, Jens Møller, told TV2 that the perpetrator apparently did not fire indiscriminately into the crowd. “If you shoot and three victims die and four others are in critical condition, they are clearly aimed shots,” Møller said.
Meanwhile, the police continue to meticulously look for the background to the act of violence. “We do not yet know the motive, but I can assure you that the authorities are doing everything possible to clarify this case and that those responsible can be prosecuted,” Justice Minister Mattias Tesfaye told the Ritzau agency.
Thomassen said there was speculation about a racist background on social media. There is currently no evidence of this either. The police are therefore examining recordings distributed on the online networks that are intended to show how the perpetrator pointed the gun at his own temple.
Eyewitnesses described the perpetrator as about 1.80 meters tall and armed with a hunting rifle. The alleged shooter was “basically known” to the police, but only “peripherally,” said Thomassen. He did not provide any further information on this. The man had a gun and ammunition with him when he was arrested. Another weapon may have been involved.
The previous information is associated with uncertainty, said Thomassen. He spoke of a kind of chaos phase. The police were alerted around 5:30 p.m. on Sunday and were on duty at the crime scene with strong forces well into the night.
The forces cordoned off the entire island of Zealand, on which the Danish capital is located. Several roads and highway exits were closed. In order to have more forces available to investigate the crime, soldiers took over guard duties from the police. The authorities set up a place where eyewitnesses could give their testimony and receive psychological support.
A reception with the Danish Crown Prince Frederik on the royal ship “Dannebrog” in the port of Sønderborg in honor of the Tour de France cycling tour, which started in Copenhagen on Friday, has been cancelled.
A performance by British singer Harry Styles at a nearby concert hall, the Royal Arena, was also canceled. The concert organizer Live Nation announced that this was done on the orders of the Danish police. It is assumed that many concertgoers stayed in the shopping center just a few hundred meters away, for example to eat something.
The Danish royal family called for cohesion. “The situation requires unity and care, and we thank the police, the emergency services and the health authorities for their quick and effective action during these hours,” said a statement from Queen Margrethe II and the crown prince couple – Frederik and Mary – late Sunday evening.
The royal family was shocked by the “shocking news”. “Our thoughts and deepest sympathy are with the victims, their families and all those affected by the tragedy.”
Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen condemned the act as a “cruel attack”. She called on the people of the country to stick together and support one another. “We were all brutally snapped out of the bright summer we had just begun,” shared Fredriksen. “It is incomprehensible. heartbreaking. useless. Our beautiful and otherwise safe capital was changed in a split second.”
The country went through its “worst nightmare” on Sunday, Fredriksen said at a press conference in front of the shopping center on Monday. “I believe that we have seldom experienced such a brutal contrast as yesterday.”