Confesses to Killing in Manslaughter Case

police station reykjavík

A girl who was released from custody last night in connection with the death of a 27-year-old man filmed the incident on her phone, RÚV reports. She asserts that the conflict was mostly between two individuals and that she did not inflict violence on the victim. One of the four suspects in the case has confessed to killing the victim, who was a Polish national.

Around midnight on April 20, law enforcement was tipped off to a confrontation between four people and the victim in the parking lot of Fjarðarkaup grocery store in Hafnarfjörður, a town in the Reykjavík capital area. Police arrived shortly after to find the victim, who was transported to the emergency room with several stab wounds and pronounced dead shortly after. The four suspects are Icelandic youth, three male and one female. The oldest suspect is 18 and the other three are under 18 years of age.

Read More: Manslaughter Case Raises Concerns Among Immigrant Community

The 17-year-old girl was remanded in custody until Thursday, April 27 but Landsréttur Court of Appeal repealed the ruling yesterday. The ruling states that the girl reported that shortly after she and her two companions exited a restaurant in Hafnarfjörður, one of them (who remains in custody) and the victim got into a fight. She stated that the conflict was mainly between the two of them and that she stayed 5-8 metres away during the fight and recorded it on her phone, as her parents had advised her to do if she found herself in an unsafe situation.

The phone recordings are said to support the girl’s statement and are being considered key evidence in the case. Police have completed all interrogations of all suspects in the case and believe they have a clear picture of the sequence of events that led to the man’s death.

Underage Manslaughter Suspects in Custody at Youth Rehab Centre

The three underage suspects in a manslaughter case that occurred last week are in custody at the youth rehab centre Stuðlar, Vísir reports. The fourth suspect in the case is 18 and is currently in custody at Hólmsheiði Prison. Chief Superintendent Grímur Grímsson of the Icelandic police’s central investigative department told RÚV the case investigation is proceeding well. The case has sparked concern among experts of increased violent behaviour among Icelandic youth as well as xenophobia towards the immigrant community.

The four teenagers are all of Icelandic origin and are suspected of manslaughter in the stabbing and death of a 27-year-old Polish man in Hafnarfjörður last week. According to RÚV’s sources, one of the suspects recorded the attack on their phone. Police are investigating whether the video is being shared.

Underage suspects placed in isolation

The four suspects were at first placed in isolation for the interest of the investigation, with one of the underage suspects initially housed at Hólmsheiði Prison, a facility for adults. That suspect has since been moved to Stuðlar youth rehab centre where the other two underage suspects are being held. It is unusual to keep suspects under the age of 18 in isolation, but the decision to do so was made in the interest of the investigation. The suspects were provided with therapy and consultation and efforts were made to reduce the negative impact of the isolation. The custody ruling on the four suspects runs out on Thursday. At least one of the four has appealed the detention to the Court of Appeal (Landsréttur).

Violent behaviour more normalised among youth

The case has shocked the local community, with some experts concerned about growing xenophobia as well as increased violence among youth in Iceland.

Criminologist Helgi Gunnlaugsson says the belief that carrying and using weapons is normal has gained a foothold among certain groups of youth in Iceland. Young people often don’t seem to understand the dangers and consequences of using weapons, according to Helgi, who says a concerted effort is needed to address the problem.

Helgi told Vísir that a certain polarisation is taking place. While society in general has less tolerance for violence of any kind, “At the same time, among young people, especially men, often on the margins, it seems to be happening that this idea arises that it’s simply natural and justifiable to carry various kinds of weapons. And not only carry these weapons, but also even use them if some sort of conflict or disagreement comes up.”

“Many people need to participate in this, to uproot this use of weapons and the ideology behind it. It is in essence not just one party, law enforcement, that can do it,” Helgi says. “Rather school authorities, families, after-school centres, and more, must also come together to make us, and especially young people, aware of what is at stake.”

Manslaughter Case Raises Concerns Among Immigrant Community

Experts in multiculturalism and members of Iceland’s largest immigrant community fear the implications of a case involving the stabbing and death of a Polish man. The four suspects are all Icelandic teenagers and are currently in custody.

Around midnight on April 20, law enforcement was tipped off to a confrontation between the four suspects and the victim in the parking lot of Fjarðarkaup grocery store in Hafnarfjörður, a town in the Reykjavík capital area. Police arrived shortly after to find the victim, who was transported to the emergency room with several stab wounds. He was pronounced dead shortly after. The victim was a Polish man 27 years of age. The four suspects are Icelandic youth, three male and one female. The oldest suspect is 18 and the other three are under 18 years of age. Police have not identified any connection between the suspects and the victim.

Community in shock

The Polish community is Iceland’s largest immigrant community, making up around 40% of all immigrants in the country. “I think everyone, not just the Polish community, is in shock, because this is very difficult,” Martyna Ylfa Suzko, a Polish-Icelandic interpreter, told RÚV. Martyna has lived in Iceland for 18 years and considers herself as much Icelandic as Polish. She believes the incident could cause conflict between Polish and Icelandic people in Iceland by encouraging people to think in terms of “us” versus “them.”

Inadequate language interpreting services

In an interview with Heimildin, the mother of the victim stated it had been difficult to receive information about the case. “All communication goes through an interpreter and it’s a new interpreter every time.” Martyna says she is familiar with such issues in the Iceland. “This is not OK at all and as I always say, receiving good and certified quality interpreting services is simply a human right, especially in a situation like this. There isn’t enough professionalism yet. […] That’s something that can recreate the trauma for this person. Interpreting is not just putting something into Google translate and translating word for word.”

Xenophobia on social media

The manslaughter case sparked much discussion on social media, with many Icelanders assuming that the suspects were foreigners before their nationality was made public. Many Icelanders posted xenophobic comments on social media in response to the case, for example encouraging immigrants in Iceland to “go back home.” Jasmina Vajzovic Crnac, the director of International Issues at the City of Reykjavík’s Welfare Department, says this rhetoric has often been seen in comment sections on Icelandic media before and called it a dangerous development.

Nurse Charged with Manslaughter Pleads Not Guilty

Héraðsdómur Reykjavíkur Reykjavík District Court

A National Hospital nurse charged with manslaughter has pleaded not guilty in a recent hearing by the Reykjavík District Court.

The nurse in question was charged with manslaughter in December of 2022 for “crimes committed in public service.”

See also: National Hospital Nurse Charged with Manslaughter

The nurse stands accused of force-feeding a patient in the National Hospital to death in August of 2021. She is said to have culpably caused the death of the victim, a woman in her fifties.

The accused was originally sentenced to be kept in custody for some time during the course of the investigation, but Vísir reports that this decision was overruled by the National Court.

The case is expected to be judged by judicial panel, in addition to including the testimony of medical professionals.

The hearing is scheduled for January 30.

National Hospital Nurse Charged with Manslaughter

Landspítali national hospital

A nurse in the psychiatric ward of Landsspítali has been charged with manslaughter and crimes committed during public employment.

The nurse is accused of having culpably caused the death of a psychiatric patient by force-feeding them. The victim in question is said to be a woman in her fifties. It is alleged that the nurse force-fed her liquid food to the point of choking.

Anna Barbara Andradóttir, prosecutor at the district attorney’s office, confirmed this in a recent statement to RÚV.

The accused is a woman in her sixties, who had previously worked in department 33C at Landsspítali. The charges were brought against her about two weeks ago.

The case was first made known August of last year. Source report that the investigation has been wide in scope, with some 20 witnesses in total called to give an account.

The case is scheduled to be heard in court this January.

 

 

Suspected of Killing Neighbour in Reykjavík

police station Hlemmur

A man in his early 20s is in police custody until July 1 under suspicion of having caused his neighbour’s death. The suspect and victim had no relation to each other beyond living in the same triplex in Barðavogur 22 in eastern Reykjavík. The victim is believed to have died from head injuries caused by a hammer and/or blunt weapon.

Last Saturday night, capital area police received a call about an unconscious man in Barðavogur street. The man was found lying outside his home with serious head injuries and efforts to resuscitate him were not successful. His neighbour was arrested immediately after on suspicion of manslaughter. The victim was born in 1975 while the suspect was born in 2001.

Police have stated that the investigation is going well. They are collecting evidence at the scene and identifying witnesses, as well as interrogating the suspect, who did not resist arrest and has not appealed his custody.

The suspect and the victim are believed to have begun an argument inside the victim’s home, where the suspect hit him on the head. The man is thought to have then escaped to the yard, where he is believed to have died from his injuries.

According to RÚV’s sources, the police were called to the same location last Friday, one day prior to the incident. The third neighbour in the triplex landed in an argument with the suspect and both accused each other of physical assault. Neither pressed charges, however, and police say that arresting the suspect at that time would have been beyond their authority.

Man Shot to Death in Reykjavík

murder rauðagerði

A man in his 30s was shot to death in east Reykjavík on Saturday night. One man is in custody in relation to the incident. An investigation into the incident is ongoing.

Reykjavík Capital Area Police received notice of an injured man in east Reykjavík at 11.57pm on Saturday night. Response teams attempted to revive the man on the scene and later transported him to the National University Hospital. He was pronounced dead shortly after arrival.

A notice from police stated that injuries caused by firearms were found on the man’s body. An investigation is ongoing and was stated to be a “top priority” for police.

Vísir reports that the victim was an Albanian national and resident of Iceland. He was married to an Icelandic woman and they were expecting their second child. The suspect in custody is a foreign national. The death is believed to be connected to some sort of “settlement” in the criminal underworld, according to Vísir.

Charged With Manslaughter, Assault, and Reckless Driving

missing woman

A man suspected of killing his mother last April in the capital area has been charged with manslaughter, assaulting her cohabiting partner, as well as for reckless driving in the capital area two years prior, Vísir reports. The woman’s death is one of two that occurred this past spring, raising concerns that COVID-19 restrictions were causing an uptick in domestic violence. In a COVID-19 briefing yesterday, National Police Commissioner Sigríður Björk Guðjónsdóttir reported that another rise in domestic violence appears to be occurring, though a rise in reporting as well.

Suspected of Killing Mother and Assaulting Her Partner

A 30-year-old man has been charged with manslaughter for the suspected killing of his mother in an apartment in Hafnarfjörður last April. He is also charged with assaulting her partner, who lived with the woman, stabbing him in the face and arm. The woman’s partner and daughters have filed claims against the suspect for ISK 4.8 million ($35,000/€29,700) in compensation, including funeral expenses. According to Vísir’s sources, the man was struggling with drug addiction and mental health issues. A psychological assessment of whether he was of sound mind is pending.

Police Visited Home Shortly Before the Crime

Police visited the apartment five hours before the incident occurred, after the woman and her husband had called police. The suspect was then at the home, and the woman could not sleep due to his condition. Police arrived at the scene, stayed for some time, and talked to the suspect before leaving. Around five hours later, he is suspected of killing his mother and assaulting her partner with a knife. According to police, a review of officers’ body cameras from the interaction showed no indication that they should have acted differently during their first visit. Furthermore, there was no legal requirement to remove the man from the premises at the time.

Reckless Driving Two Years Prior

The suspect was also charged for reckless driving two years prior to the incident, in June 2018. At speeds nearing 200km/h (124m/h), he drove against traffic, crossed red lights, and conducted illegal U-turns while under the influence of drugs and alcohol. It may be pure luck that no one was injured in the incident. Around one year later, he was stopped by police while driving under the influence.

Suspect Charged in Fatal House Fire

fire Vesturgata Bræðraborgarstígur

Police have charged the man who has been held in connection with a house fire this June that left three people dead and two in critical condition, mbl.is reports. The suspect, who is in his sixties, has been in custody since the day of the fire.

Friday marked twelve weeks that the man has been in custody—the maximum amount of time a person can be held without being charged. It has been confirmed that the man will remain in custody for another four weeks. The suspect was charged with manslaughter under Article 211 of the general penal code and arson under Article 164. Per the terms of Article 211, punishment for manslaughter calls for anywhere from five years’ imprisonment (the minimum allowable sentence) to life. Article 164 dictates that the punishment for arson be no less than six months’ imprisonment.

See Also: Fire Sparks Conversation About Working Conditions Facing Foreigners

The house that burned down was located at Bræðraborgarstígur 1 in the westside neighbourhood of Vesturbær and was on a list of illegal residential housing published by the fire brigade in 2017. The building was reported on as far back as 2015 in Stundin newspaper regarding sub-standard housing for foreign workers and was covered two years later by the TV programme Kveikur, which did an investigation of illegal residence in the house.

All three people who died in the fire were Polish citizens. The families of the victims have begun legal proceedings of their own and will be suing both the man in custody as well as the owner of the house.

Charged With Manslaughter in Selfoss Fire

The District Court has charged a man with manslaughter due to negligence in connection with a fire in Selfoss, South Iceland which killed two people. RÚV reports the man was arrested shortly after the fire began October 31 and has been in custody since.

A woman who was also arrested in connection to the fire has been charged with failing to prevent the fire and alert others.

Selfoss police were informed of a fire which had trapped a man and woman on the upper floor of a house shortly after 4.00pm on October 31. Firefighting crews fought the flames late into the night before finally reaching the upper floor the following morning and confirming the two had lost their lives.