He was dressed like Darth Vader as he killed a teacher and a student with a sword at a school in Trollhattan, Sweden. The horrifying attack happened at a high school in the city on the morning of October 22. The suspect has been named as Anton Lundin Pettersson, 21. Cops were called to the scene at 10:10 a.m. local time on October 22. In total, three people are dead, including Pettersson. Reports from Sweden indicate that two others are in stable but serious condition.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Students Posed for Photos With Pettersson Thinking He Was Dressed for Halloween
The BBC reports that the suspect is not known to local police in Trollhattan. The network says that he killed a student and a teacher at the school with a sword, while injuring another teacher and student. There was so much confusion during the attack that pupils at the Kronan School posed for photos with Pettersson, thinking it was all part of a Halloween joke.
He was shot and killed by responding police officers to the school. Pettersson was a resident of Trollhattan, according to his Facebook page. The two dead people were found at the entrance to the school. A police spokesperson said that more than one knife was used in the attack. He acted alone, reports Russia Today.
Speaking to the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet, a student at the school, using the pseudonym Sara, described that Pettersson was blaring “horrible, Halloween-type” music. When students left their classrooms they saw Pettersson, thinking it was a prank, the students went to take photos with him. After a teacher tried to move him along, Sara says Pettersson stabbed that man. Sara and her friends ran and although he chased them, they managed to escape.
2. His YouTube Channel Shows His Admiration for Hitler & Nazi Germany
A police spokesman, Thord Haraldsson said that Pettersson’s home has been searched by investigators and that officers found “interesting things,” according to the BBC report. Haraldsson didn’t comment about Pettersson’s links to Nazi extremism. Though, Pettersson’s YouTube page shows an admiration for Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany. The Local in Sweden reports that he was also critical of Islam and immigration. The Swedish newspaper Expressen reports that Pettersson was a subscriber to leading right-wing bloggers in the country.
The attack comes as the Swedish government confirmed that in 2015, the country will take in up to 190,000 asylum seekers, stemming from the refugee crisis in Syria.
His last Facebook update came a day before the killings where Pettersson posted a video link to the Rob Zombie song “Dragula.” The cover photo on his Facebook page is a reference to German heavy metal band Rammstein.
One of his neighbors, Liv Ringstrom, told the Daily Telegraph “I meet him in the stairwell and he always seems very nice and very friendly. I’ve no idea if he could have done it.” While a childhood friend of Pettersson’s described the killer as “introverted.”
3. One of the Victims Is a 20-Year-Old Teaching Assistant, the Other a 17-Year-Old Student
One of the men killed is a 20-year-old teaching assistant, the other deceased man is a 17-year-old boy. RT reports that he died in surgery.
The two victims who remain in a local hospital are a 41-year-old teacher and a 15-year-old boy. They are in serious but stable condition.
4. The King of Sweden Said His Nation Is ‘In Shock’
In a statement, Sweden’s King Carl Gustav said that he had “great dismay and sorrow” about the killings in Trollhattan. Meanwhile the country’s Prime Minister Stefan Lofven said that October 22 was a “black day for Sweden,” adding “I think of the victims and their families, students and staff, and the whole of the affected community. No words can describe what they are going through right now. We must ensure that they receive all the support they need.”
5. Trollhattan Is Less Than 50 Miles North of Sweden’s Second Largest City
The city of Trollhattan is located less than 50 miles north of Gothenburg. The BBC reports that this is only the second school attack in Sweden, the last was a shooting in 1961 that killed one person. Trollhattan is known for its movie studio complex known as “Trollywood.” The city has a population of around 46,000.