Authorities Accuse Inventor of Abusing Journalist Before Murdering Her

January 23, 2018Jan 23, 2018

In August 2017, Kim Wall, a 30-year-old Swedish journalist, disappeared. Nearly two weeks after her disappearance, her headless torso washed up on the shoreline of Copenhagen, Denmark. DNA tests performed by police eventually confirmed that the torso was Wall's.

When Wall disappeared, she was on the submarine of inventor Peter Madsen, who she was interviewing for an article. Madsen was charged with her murder, but now authorities are saying that his crime may be even more brutal.

Danish authorities accused by Madsen of binding and abusing Wall on board his submarine before killing her, according to an indictment released in full on Tuesday, reported The New York Times.

Madsen has given shifting explanations for what happened to the prolific freelance journalist after she boarded his submarine. He recently admitted to dismembering her body, but he claimed that she died accidentally prior to his dismembering her.

In the indictment, however, prosecutors say he brought a “saw, sharpened screwdrivers, straps, strips and pipes” to the submarine before the trip. They argue that this means he had a deliberate plan to kill Wall before she came onto his submarine.

They also say he “abused her by hitting her, stabbed and cut her, and he killed her after which he dismembered her body."

Straps and pipes were also tied to her torso and limbs to weigh them down after he threw them overboard.

"The police investigation has not been able to establish the exact cause of death, but say that she was either strangled or had her throat cut," noted The Times.

Police had earlier said that Ms. Wall had been stabbed repeatedly, but they did not say they believed it happened before her death. Now they're saying the abuse happened prior to death.

"Mr. Madsen, 47, was formally charged last week with premeditated killing, a charge equivalent to murder; sexual assault; and improper handling of a body," reported The Times.

He's also accused of deliberately sinking his submarine and thereby endangering lives by forcing two vessels—a cargo ship and a cruise ship—to take evasive action.

At one point in the investigation, Madsen claimed that Ms. Wall had been killed by a blow to the head from a submarine hatch. That story fell apart when divers found her head and limbs in plastic bags. No such injury was found.

“My client read the indictment, and we’re both puzzled,” Betina Hald Engmark, Mr. Madsen’s lawyer, said on Tuesday. “It’s not quite what we expected, but we hope everything will come to light when the trial begins. The case should be prosecuted in court and not in the press. Some members of the press seem to forget that the prosecution hasn’t proved their case yet,” she said, declining to comment further.

The trial by jury is scheduled to start in Copenhagen on March 8. The verdict is expected on April 25. In other news, the governor of Kentucky just released a statement about the recent school shooting. 

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