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Prisoner who attacked Helsinki police officer dies

On Thursday, a Helsinki police officer was interrogating an inmate at Sörnäinen Prison when he suddenly attacked and severely injured the policeman. A day later the attacker was dead. The cause of death is under investigation.

Sörnäisten vankila.
Sörnäinen Prison Image: Jyrki Valkama / Yle

Finland's National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) announced via Twitter on Saturday afternoon that a man suspected of the attempted murder of a police officer on Thursday had himself died a day later.

According to the tweet, the suspect died on Friday evening in hospital. The NBI is investigating the cause of death, but does not suspect any crime.

On Thursday afternoon, a Helsinki police sergeant was interrogating a 35-year-old Finnish male prisoner at Sörnäinen Prison when he suddenly attacked the policeman. It took about 15 minutes before prison staff noticed the assault and intervened. In the meantime the police officer was badly injured.

The policeman remains in hospital with injuries described as serious but not life-threatening.

Around 9 o'clock on Thursday evening, the inmate was found badly injured in his cell and taken to hospital where he died a day later.

Long rap sheet

The two had not apparently known each other previously. The prisoner, who was from the Helsinki area, was being questioned about a car theft.

According to the tabloid Iltalehti, he was undergoing a two-year term for traffic violations, but had an extensive criminal record, including violent assaults and drug offences. He had been incarcerated at least 10 times.

Only one Finnish officer has been killed in the line of duty so far this century. He was run over by a young speeder in 2007. The previous incident was a decade earlier, when an escaped Danish prisoner shot to death two policemen in Helsinki.

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