Danish police said the suspect in the Copenhagen shopping center shooting that killed three, including two teenagers, was known to mental health services.
“Our suspect is also known among the psychiatric services, besides, I do not want to comment,” Copenhagen police chief Søren Thomassen said at a press conference on Monday.
Mr Thomassen added that the victims appeared to have been randomly selected and there was no indication that the shooting was an “act of terror”.
“Our assessment is that the victims were random, that it was not motivated by gender or anything else,” Mr. Thomassen said.
People hug in front of the Fields shopping center, where a gunman killed three people and injured several more in Copenhagen. Source: Getty / AFP / Olafur Steinar Getsson
The police chief could not yet comment on the motives, but said they appeared to have been prepared prior to the attack and that the 22-year-old suspect was not assisted further.
“In the current situation, it seems that he acted alone,” he said.
The three killed have been identified as a Danish girl and boy, aged 17, and a 47-year-old Russian citizen living in Denmark.
As a result of the shooting, four more were injured: two Danes, 19 and 40 years old, and two Swedish citizens, a 50-year-old man and a 16-year-old woman.
A police officer takes a photo of a man, who was detained and suspected, at the scene of an incident at the Field shopping center in Copenhagen, Denmark on July 3, 2022. Source: AFP / Getty
Police confirmed that the suspected shooter was in the mall at the time of the shooting and is known to police “but only peripherally”.
They added that they believe the footage of the suspect circulating on social media since Sunday evening is genuine.
In some of the images, a young man can be seen posing with a weapon, mimicking suicide gestures, and talking about psychiatric drugs “that don’t work.”
The YouTube and Instagram accounts believed to belong to the suspect were taken down overnight, AFP notes.
The shooting took place on Sunday afternoon at the busy Fields shopping centre, located between the city center and Copenhagen Airport.
According to police, the shooter was armed with a rifle, pistol and knife, and while the weapons were not considered illegal, the suspect did not have a license to use them.
Eyewitnesses told Danish media that they saw more than 100 people rushing out of the mall when the first shots were fired.
Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen condemns the “brutal attack” in a statement late Sunday evening.
“Our beautiful and usually so safe capital has changed in a split second,” she said.
The shooting comes just over a week after a gunman opened fire outside a gay bar in Oslo in neighboring Norway, killing two people and injuring 21 others.
In February 2015, two people were killed and five injured in Copenhagen in a series of Islamist-inspired shootings.