Police in Oslo are under investigation themselves after an officer shot a woman Friday evening who allegedly was threatening to stab a child. Witnesses denied the situation was serious enough to warrant gunfire.
The woman, believed to have psychological problems, was brandishing a knife when police were called and told she was threatening a child. When police arrived at the scene, in Oslo’s Grønland district, they demanded three times that the woman must relinquish her knife. When she refused to do so, an officer shot and wounded her. The child was unharmed.
She was taken to Oslo University Hospital Ullevål, where her injuries were described as moderate. Crowds gathered at the scene, however, and the situation was chaotic, with many claiming that the police overreacted.
“I know the woman well, she’s a frequent customer in my shop,” one local merchant told newspaper Aftenposten. “I told police they didn’t need to shoot, I could get the knife away from her. They had other means of stopping her.”
A police spokesman said they evaluated the situation as so threatening, however, that the officer fired a shot. The episode is now under review by the state police’s internal affairs division. Norwegian police have only recently begun carrying arms routinely, because of an increased threat of terrorism.