Police in East Uusimaa say they’re holding a 40-year-old French citizen in custody, suspected of stabbing his 3-year-old child to death in a Porvoo playground this morning.
According to the police, the child was airlifted from the playground by helicopter to the hospital, but died from injuries.
MTV Uutiset reports that the child’s mother had applied for a restraining order in August, and the proceedings are pending at the Distric Court of East Uusimaa. The channel reports the couple’s marriage had ended in March, and that the man does not currently have a permanent address in Finland.
Early Morning Alarm
Police received a call about an incident happening in the playground at a Swedish-language school in Porvoo early this morning. They arrived on the scene and detained the suspect, who had taken his son from home without permission earlier in the morning.
Now, counselling services are being offered to local residents or school pupils who may have been affected by the events.
The Criminology and Justice Institute says that it is very rare for a child aged between one and 14 to become the victim of a homicide in Finland.
In Finland from 2003 to 2016, 78 young people under the age of 15 were killed; half were boys and half were girls. According to the Institute’s research, 48 of the cases the mother was the killer, and for 24 cases it was the father.
The Institute reports that the most common event is when a mother kills her newborn baby, and that when a young person under ten years old becomes the victim of a homicide, it is quite often a family member who is the attacker.
In recent years in Finland, there have been several shocking cases of homicide involving young children. In Helsinki, the father and step mother of an 8-year-old girl are serving life in prison for her abuse and murder. Their appeal was denied. The girl died on Mother’s Day 2012, and her parents tied her so that she suffocated slowly, after a history of beatings.
In the spring of 2012, police found a woman and her two children dead in their Helsinki home. And in Oulu in 2014, a woman was sentenced to 13 years in prison for killing five babies. The bodies were found in the cellar of a building.