The bow and arrow ‘terrorist’ who rampaged through a Norwegian town killed all five of his victims in the same street after apparently attacking four of them in their homes, it emerged today.
The four women and one man are believed to have been stabbed or hacked to death by Muslim convert Espen Andersen Bråthen shortly after he unleashed a volley of arrows, hitting an off duty police officer in the back.
Three of the victims were named locally today as retired couple Gunnar Sauve and Liv Borge who are believed to have been aged in their 60s, and frail artist Gun Marith Madsen, 75, who walked with the aid of a frame.
The bow and arrow ‘terrorist’ who rampaged through a Norwegian town killed all five of his victims in the same street
The four women and one man are believed to have been stabbed or hacked to death by Muslim convert Espen Andersen Bråthen (pictured)
Bråthen, 37, who was described as an oddball loner by his neighbours began his rampage by taking potshots at shoppers inside the Coop Extra supermarket in the sleepy town of Kongsberg, south east of Oslo.
Local police officer Rigoberto Villarroel, 48, was in the store with his family when Bråthen began shooting his deadly arrows.
He warned other shoppers to get away and was on the phone to his colleagues to tell them what was happening when Brathen shot at him and left an arrow embedded in his back.
The brave officer continued to shout warnings at passers-by as he stood at the entrance to the store, but Bråthen managed to slip away while firing off other arrows, leaving at least one sticking out of a wooden house on Wednesday evening.
Bråthen began his rampage by taking potshots at shoppers inside the Coop Extra supermarket in the sleepy town of Kongsberg (pictured)
Forensics dust for prints at the home of Mohammed Shabam who saw the bow-and-arrow attacker try to break into his property
The suspect ran around 250m down a hill, discarding his bow and a quiver of arrows on the way, to reach Hytegatten which is one of the most historic streets in Kongsberg, with a mix of clapperboard houses dating back to the 18th century and more modern properties.
Once he was in Hytegatten, he murdered former electricity firm employee Ms Borge and ex legal official Mr Sauve in their ground floor apartment with panoramic views over the Numedalslågen River which flows through the town.
Mr Sauve’s daughter Elin Nærum Sauve confirmed their deaths in a Facebook post, saying: ‘Unfortunately, my father and his partner were two of those killed during the attack on Kongsberg on Wednesday.
‘We have no more information about this than what the police have shared at press conferences. Thanks for all the support and nice greetings so far.’
Mrs Madsen who was a widow was killed in her ground floor apartment at the end of the same street, around 100m away from the home of Mr Sauve and Ms Borge.
Ceramic artist Hanne Englund who was aged in her 50s was earlier revealed to have also been murdered by Bråthen after he apparently got into her studio home (pictured)
Neighbours said two men living in the flat above her rushed to help after hearing a disturbance, but were unable to save her.
Ceramic artist Hanne Englund who was aged in her 50s was earlier revealed to have also been murdered by Bråthen after he apparently got into her studio home in Hytegatten and barricaded himself inside.
Local residents described the mother-of-two who had a long term partner as ‘warm hearted’ and ‘flamboyant’ and ‘beautiful’ with many friends around the town, and known for holding an annual midsummer party in her garden for all her neighbours.
It is thought that Bråthen may have got in some of the homes he targeted through doors at the rear of the properties, possibly slipping away through rear gardens to avoid police who were desperately searching for him.
Many people in the town are said to have often left their doors unlocked because of the area’s low crime rate and the trust traditionally shown to neighbours in Norwegian society.
A fourth woman who is believed to have lived locally is believed to have died after being attacked by Bråthen and left in a pool of blood outside Ms Englund’s home.
Bråthen, a Danish citizen who has lived most of his life in Norway, was arrested by police, more than 30 minutes after his rampage began
Two other people, in addition to the police officer, were injured in the attack. It is not known if they were hit by arrows or stabbed.
Bråthen, a Danish citizen who has lived most of his life in Norway, was arrested by police, more than 30 minutes after his rampage began, after he was cornered close to Hytegatten, and officers fired warning shots.
He has been charged with five counts of murder and has been remanded into the custody of the Norwegian health services while police continue their investigations.
Hanne Englund has been named locally as one of the five people murdered by the Norwegian bow and arrow killer during his horrific ‘terror’ rampage
A preliminary hearing on Friday morning at the Buskerud District Court decided that Bråthen should be held for four weeks by the health services, as requested by police.
He was banned from writing letters and receiving visits during the period and must spend the first two weeks in full isolation.
Bråthen who lived alone in Kongsberg and had previously been banned from visiting his parents after threatening to kill his father, did not appear in court.
His former friends said he had been jobless for many years after effectively ‘withdrawing’ from society.
Police were often at his house, and court documents show he picked up multiple convictions for aggravated theft and drug possession.
Bråthen’s one remaining friend broke ties with him in 2017 when he spotted him on a YouTube video, saying he had converted to Islam and making veiled threats.
Candles and floral tributes have been left outside the three homes where victims were attacked, as well as in a central square on the other side of the river.
Norway’s new prime minister Jonas Gahr Støre who was only on his second day in office visited the square on Friday night to pay respects to the dead.
He also visited the street where the killings happened Kari Hoff, 82, who lives opposite Mrs Madsen’s home said: ‘I only realised something was happening when I heard a helicopter overhead. It was flying so low.
Student Mohammed Shabam, 25, who lives at the end of Hytegatten said he and his friend Ibrahim Saffokri, 20, who lives with him had a lucky escape (home pictured)
Norwegian police confirmed that Bråthen was a Muslim convert, and stated that he had made admissions about carrying out the attacks
Then I saw police everywhere. They went to all the apartments asking if everyone was OK, and told everyone to lock their doors and stay inside.’
Mrs Masden’s friend Ellen Langaas Jensen said: ‘She was very powerful in her character. She wore colourful clothes and enjoyed painting flowers. She was a very kind person and young at heart.’
Student Mohammed Shabam, 25, who lives at the end of Hytegatten said he and his friend Ibrahim Saffokri, 20, who lives with him had a lucky escape when Bråthen started banging on their window during his rampage.
He said: ‘We all ran into a bedroom to get away from him. The door of the house was unlocked so he could easily have come in. We are now just happy to be alive.’
Eir Marie Ouff Seim, 39, who walks through Hytegatten every day on the way to work, said: ‘This is a beautiful street, but now it is a pace of sadness.
Kongsberg is a small town in southern Norway that straddles the Numedalslågen river with a population of about 26,000. It is known as the home of the Royal Norwegian Mint, houses the headquarters of a major arms manufacturer, and serves as a satellite campus for the University of South-Eastern Norway
‘What has happened is surreal. It is just not right. The person who did this has to have a really sick mind. This sort of thing just doesn’t happen in Kongsberg. Our town is known for being beautiful and quiet.’
Members of the Fontenehuset community group in Kongsberg spent today hanging up heart shaped cards on local streets, with hand written messages such as ‘Hug to you’, ‘You need to care’, ‘Stay together’ and ‘You are Not alone’.
Group member Liv Oline said: ‘We want to reclaim the town after what has happened. I lived close to the man who was responsible. He looked like an ordinary man, but he seemed lonely, but I never quarrelled with him.’
Norwegian police confirmed that Bråthen was a Muslim convert, and stated that he had made admissions about carrying out the attacks.
Officers also confirmed that they had been told in the past about fears that Bråthen had been radicalised.
Officers also confirmed that they had been told in the past about fears that Bråthen had been radicalised
Candles and floral tributes have been left outside the three homes where victims were attacked, as well as in a central square on the other side of the river
Oussama Tlili, imam of the mosque in Kongsberg, confirmed that Bråthen had visited three times about four or five years ago but ‘seemed to know nothing about Islam.’
He told local media that Bråthen had spoken to him incoherently about ‘a message’ he had been passed by some higher power, saying he needed help to deliver it.
Tlili told Norwegian broadcaster NRK: ‘I explained to him that I could not help him with that. I said that Kongsberg is not the place to do it.’
The imam added that he had concerns about Bråthen’s mental health and thought about telling the police, but he quickly stopped coming to the mosque and the incident was forgotten.
A local Muslim said she did not believe that Bråthen was a true convert as he had not changed his name.
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