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Woman Dead After Attack at Finland College

Suspect is said to be a student at Savo Vocational College
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 1, 2019 1:36 PM CDT
Police attend the scene of a violent incident at the Hermanni shopping centre in Kuopio, Finland, Tuesday Oct. 1, 2019.   (Hannu Rainamo/Lehtikuva via AP)
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(Newser) – Police say a student at the Savo Vocational College in Finland showed up at the school Tuesday with a sword and firearm and went on a rampage that left one woman dead and nine others injured. The unnamed suspect, who is in custody, is described as a Finnish national born in 1994 with no prior criminal record, per the AP. He suffered a serious injury when police opened fire on him. No motive has been given, though Finnish newspaper Keskisuomalainen alleges the woman who was killed was the attacker's "primary target." The school is located on the second floor of the Herman shopping center in Kuopio, which is roughly 220 miles northeast of Helsinki.

The injured were mainly women and have been described as students and staffers between the ages of 15 and 50. A search of the suspect's apartment allegedly turned up firebombs. The BBC picks up a report from the Iltahlehti news website that alleges the suspect entered a classroom, withdrew a sword from a bag, and went after the teacher. Students reportedly hurled chairs at the attacker as they tried to escape. Says one witness, "He hit a girl in the neck with a sword and stabbed her in the stomach." The AFP reports Finland has a population of 5.4 million; per the BBC, there were 73 homicides in 2017 for a murder rate of 1.35 per 100,000. The US rate that same year was 5.3 per 100,000. (Read more Finland stories.)

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