Monday, October 11, 2010

Attempted Murder at Swedish School

Unfortunately, this blog is not devoted to the (sweet) side of Sweden.  Today, my classmates and I experienced something terrible and shocking.

At 11 am this morning in Kungälav, Sweden (where I take my Swedish language course 5 days a week), my class was told we could go on a quick 10 minute break.  Around 11:08, the majority of the classroom had made it's way back to the classroom.  I sit down at my desk in the front, and turn around to see a young woman in my class (from Tunisia) totally broken down in tears.  With her face down in her hands and tears streaming down her face, she could only mutter the name of one of our classmates.  I implored her to tell us what had happened, but she just couldn't say more than the girl's name.  The majority of my classmates ran out to see what had happened. I couldn't get out of my chair.  Sometimes you just know in your heart what you'll find is awful and I didn't want to see what had happened.

A few minutes later we all find out that one of our young, sweet, Thai classmates has been the victim of a knife attack in the bathroom just 10 meters or so from our classroom.  I will tell you right away, that my classmate has survived the attack.

We don't know ALL of the details yet, but since my brave teacher is the one that literally saved her, I do know many of the details.  Apparently, earlier this morning, a young woman with golden skin, dark eyes and dark hair had asked a girl in our class if she knew this Thai girl who's name I will leave out of this story.  My classmate said that yes she knew the girl and that she was in our classroom.  This was just about an hour or so before the incident.

Apparently, the attacker had gotten totally liquored up before the incident. A little past 11AM this morning, while we were on break, my Thai classmate went in to the restroom, just before coming back to our class.  Somehow, the attacker went into the bathroom and locked them both inside the private bathroom.  As I'm told, the attacker said to our classmate something to the effect of- "Take this pill or I'll kill you".  Our classmate bravely refused to down this unknown pill.  The attacker tried to take the knife to our classmates neck (this knife was a full-out butcher knife, well over 1 foot long by the way).  Our classmate held out her hand to stop the knife and she was struck in her hand (a true defense wound).  The attacker had our classmate on the floor and just then, our classmate screamed "HELP!!! SHE'S TRYING TO KILL ME!".  In perfect timing, my amazingly brave teacher and another teacher from the school, used their keycards to unlock the door.  My teacher grabbed the attacker and pulled her off our helpless classmate.  I'm told the attacker didn't fight back, at that point she realized that she was caught and it was over.

After the attack, my classmate asked the girl why she was doing this to her.  My classmate didn't even know the attacker, but it seems apparent her attacker knew exactly who she was.  Something about my classmates "man" was repeated.  Possibly it was a jealous rage that led to this heinous crime?

I asked my teacher if the police had been called, and because I didn't get a definite answer, I rang the police for the first time in Sweden and informed them of the attack.  I was the 2nd caller and the police came about 7 minutes after my call.  I should also note here, that among all of us (immigrants) in the classroom, only a couple people even knew how to dial the police in Sweden, which I now know is (112).

The attacker was captured by the police and will hopefully be put away and/or deported.  We do not yet know where the attacker is from.  I was able to talk with the victim for a brief second as her boyfriend walked with her to leave to give our support to her from our classroom.

There are many witnesses to the attack, the knife is being held by the police, and they were even able to get the pill that the attacker tried to force our classmate to take and they are running tests on the pill. Luckily, there is an unsurmountable amount of evidence against the attacker. 

Thankfully, the cut she received physically was not life threatening, although I suppose this experience will cut deeply emotionally forever.  The entire school felt the pain of this attack and our thoughts and prayers are with our classmate.


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