Ax-Wielding Teenager Goes on GTA-Style Rampage in Switzerland
A 17-year-old teenager charged passers-by with an ax and attempted to escape in a car before pulling up at a gas station to attack several more people in the eastern Swiss municipality of Flums. Police said the attack was not terrorism-related.
The incident started at around 8pm on Sunday, when a young man armed with an ax turned on passers-by near a postal office, injuring many of them. He then stole a car parked nearby, sparking a car chase that involved a police helicopter.
The attempt to flee failed after he reportedly collided with a bicycle. In a bid to escape on foot, he stopped at to a local gas station and injured several more people there.
Police shot and wounded the perpetrator before arresting him.
“He was out of control,” local police spokesman Bruno Metzger said, describing the attacker, Blick reported.
“A man has injured many people with an ax. Suspected perpetrator has been arrested. No terrorism relation. The situation is under control,” they wrote on Twitter.
An eyewitness cited by Swiss news portal sueodstschweiz.ch claimed that the prime target of the rampage was a family with a small child in a baby stroller. The assailant reportedly attacked the husband, then turned on his wife, hitting her multiple times before fleeing the scene in the hijacked vehicle.
To cut off escape routes, law enforcement had to seal off a number of streets in the neighborhood during the hunt for the attacker.
The extent of the injuries and the number of the victims is yet unclear. Little is known about the suspect. Police have not revealed the teenager’s name, identifying him only as a Latvian and a local resident. The motive of the attacker is unclear, but police believe that he acted alone and that the attack has no connection to terrorism.
Police are expected to release more details about the attack at a press conference scheduled for Monday morning.