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The 23-year-old suspect covered his face with a hood at the District Court of Southern Karelia on 7 December, 2016.
The 23-year-old suspect covered his face with a hood at the District Court of Southern Karelia on 7 December, 2016.

The District Court of Southern Karelia has detained a 23-year-old man for probable cause of three murders in connection with a shooting that took place in Imatra, South-east Finland, on Sunday.

Investigators believe they have successfully determined the sequence of events that led to the deadly shooting, despite the suspect's continuing refusal in interrogations to provide an explanation for his actions, indicates a press release from the South-eastern Finland Police Department.

“No political or ideological motives have been found. Nothing suggests that the victims had been selected in advance,” a police spokesperson says in the press release.

Online discussion boards and social media were flooded with both disinformation and misinformation in the aftermath of the shooting. One Twitter account, for example, alleged that the shooting was ethnically motivated and that the victims were Russians. The same account was also used to disseminate claims that the shooter was a far-right extremist who had previously been employed by the Finnish Defence Forces.

Related posts:

- Police: Imatra triple-murder suspect unwilling to co-operate in interrogations (06 December, 2016)

- 23-year-old man suspected of murdering three women in Imatra (05 December, 2016)

The National Police Board believes the phenomenon is here to stay, reports YLE.

Vesa Häkkinen, the director of communications on current affairs at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, estimates in an interview with the public broadcasting company that the objective of such so-called trolls was to damage the foreign relations of Finland.

“The messages were really aggressive,” he points out.

Jarkko Sipilä, an experienced crime reporter for MTV, believes the flood of disinformation was partly a consequence of the decision of law enforcement authorities not to disclose any details of the incident until the following morning. “YLE asks: ‘Why was social media full of rumours after the tragedy in Imatra?’ I answer: ‘The first police press release came ten hours after the incident’,” he tweeted on Monday.

The number of victims, for example, was not confirmed until 10am on Sunday.

Heli Jämsen-Turkki, the director of communications at the South-eastern Finland Police Department, reminds that the priority immediately after the shooting was to contact the families of the victims. The approach, she states, was justified because the suspect had already been brought into police custody.

“The police can't really provide too much information when the investigation is only in its initial stages,” she adds in an interview with Uusi Suomi.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Lauri Heino – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi

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