The weekend shooting of a 12-year-old girl in Stockholm sparked outrage on Monday and sparked yet another debate over an increase in gang-related violence in Sweden.
The girl, who is not believed to be the intended target, was hit by a stray bullet aimed at two men allegedly linked to Swedish organized crime, local news website Expressen reported.
People had put flowers and candles on Monday.
“This cannot happen anymore. She’s a 12-year-old girl, “said 51-year-old Christina Lundstrom, who had paid her respects.
Police are working today at the location, where a twelve-year-old girl was shot and killed Sunday morning at a gas station in Botkyrka, south of Stockholm, Sweden
Police take pictures as they gather evidence after a 12-year-old girl was shot dead yesterday in an allegedly failed drive-by shooting in Botkyra, south of Stockholm
People pay tribute by placing candles and flowers where a 12-year-old girl was shot today at a gas station in Botkyrka, south of Stockholm, Sweden. The girl was taken to the hospital, but later died of her injuries
No arrests were made, but police told AFP they had opened a murder investigation and were looking for information about a white car seen at the time of the shooting.
Justice Minister Morgan Johansson described his “displeasure and aversion” to TT news agency and pledged “more police and more severe punishment.”
Opposition MP Johan Forsell called on Swedish radio for a reconsideration ‘to make Sweden safer’.
Sweden has given police additional surveillance powers, intensified witness protection systems and tightened penalties for drugs and weapon-related crimes following a wave of shootings and bombings in recent years.
During the first six months of 2020, police said 20 people were killed in 163 shootings, in the country of approximately 10.3 million inhabitants.
In 2019, there were approximately 42 deaths from 334 reported shootings.
Last August, two women, who were also not the intended targets, were shot in incidents just weeks apart.
Criminologist Ardavan Khoshnood told broadcaster SVT that about 15 innocent bystanders had been killed in the past 10 years.
People pay tribute by placing candles and flowers where a 12-year-old girl was shot at a gas station in Botkyrka, south of Stockholm, Sweden today
Local police chief Carolina Paasikivi said she could not confirm the reports until her team gathered evidence.
“I cannot confirm such reports, but I would like to emphasize the urgent need for witnesses and comments. Only when we have that can we say what happened. Let’s determine if they are relevant observations or not, “Paasikivi told the TT news line.
The shooting took place on Sunday morning shortly before 3:30 am outside a gas station in the Norsborg area of Botkyrka, south of Stockholm.
Paasikivi said the police were currently looking through camera footage for hours and investigators had found ‘interesting’ scenes for them to analyze.
No arrests have been made this morning, but Paasikivi said several people have been called in to question the case.
Swedish Interior Minister Mikael Damberg said: “I am aware that no words are enough for those who have lost a child in such a terrible way, but I want to say that our thoughts are going to you and that we share your sorrow in this difficult time.
“From the government’s side, we will continue to vigorously expand society’s ability to fight crime with more police, more severe punishment and preventive work.”
Photos from yesterday’s scene show researchers combing through the area, which is outside a McDonalds restaurant and Shell pumping station.
“We will investigate and do everything in our power to bring the people behind this terrible act to justice,” national chief of police Anders Thornberg told TT.
“We will collect witness statements, forensic evidence, and any material that can help us advance the investigation. But how successful we are also depends on those who know something about the incident that is occurring and helping us solve the crime. ‘
Local Michel Rizk told Aftonbladet that he had arrived at the gas station to refuel, but found the property closed by investigators.
“I find it tragic. You’re worried, ”he said.
“I have children myself and it is only a matter of time before they run to the gas station to buy something.”
Locals have gathered to light candles and keep a wake for the 12-year-old.