• Norway edition
 
Tears in court at autopsy details from Utøya
Photo: Heiko Junge/Scanpix

Tears in court at autopsy details from Utøya

Published: 04 May 2012 14:56 GMT+02:00
Updated: 04 May 2012 17:38 GMT+02:00

On the 12th day of the right-wing extremist's trial, the Oslo district court heard a clinical explanation of how the first nine victims died before being given more intimate descriptions, illustrated with photographs of the same people when they were alive.

Most of the 69 people killed on the small, heart-shaped island near Oslo on July 22nd were teens attending a summer camp hosted by the ruling Labour Party.

The lawyers representing survivors and victims' family members visibly fought back tears as they sketched brief but moving pictures of the dead based on testimony gathered from their loved ones.

The first person Breivik shot, camp guard and off-duty police officer Trond Berntsen, was thus described as "the best dad in the world," as a picture of him holding his two young children was projected on a screen in the courtroom.

And Lejla Selaci "was a girl who spread laughter and joy. She was known for always fighting for justice, solidarity and democracy," another lawyer told the court with a trembling voice, referring to a bubbly girl shot dead at just 17.

The descriptions provoked an anguished yet dignified display of emotions from many of the relatives, including children and younger siblings, seated in the courtroom: some broke down in tears, some embraced and others left the room.

Sitting just a few metres from Breivik, a teenager listened with a blank face to the description of how the killer had deprived her and her three siblings of their mother.

Breivik himself however showed no emotion, as has largely been the case since his trial began on April 16th.

The 33-year-old confessed killer remained stony-faced and aloof as he looked through a folder in front of him with pictures of the dead as they were found on Utøya, and again as he watched the coroner show on a life-size doll how bullets penetrated each body.

As he has since the beginning of the trial, he appeared to be taking notes under the scrutinising gaze of four psychiatric experts appointed by the court to review his mental state.

Breivik "was probably the only one who didn't have goose bumps or was crying," young Utøya survivor Sondre Lindhagen Nilssen told the Aftenposten daily's online edition.

The list of Breivik's victims on Utøya is so long that it is expected to take all of next week to go through all the post-mortem reports.

Of the 69 people who died on the island, 67 were shot to death, while the remaining two died from a fall and drowning, Torleiv Ole Rognum of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health told the court.

Most were hit by two or three bullets -- up to eight had been pulled from one body -- and a full 56 of the victims had been shot in the head, Rognum said, revealing how Breivik had systematically executed his victims.

As he strode around the island shooting for more than an hour, Breivik had among other things used fragmentation bullets typically used when hunting large game.

"They create thousands of small fragments that you cannot see with the naked eye," Rognum explained.

Before he went on his rampage on Utøya, Breivik had bombed the government building housing the offices of Labour Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, who was not harmed in the attack that killed eight people.

While Breivik, who has been charged with committing "acts of terror," has confessed to carrying out the twin attacks, he refuses to plead guilty, insisting they were "cruel but necessary" to stop the Labour Party's "multicultural experiment" and the "Muslim invasion" of Norway and Europe.

Although he is certain to be found guilty, his 10-week trial should determine the question of his sanity.

If the court finds him sane, Breivik will face Norway's maximum 21-year prison sentence, but that term can be extended for as long as he is considered a threat to society.

If he is found criminally insane however, he will be sent to a closed psychiatric care unit for treatment.

That is a fate Breivik, who is intent upon showing that his anti-Islam ideology is not the ravings of a lunatic, has described as "worse than death".

Five judges will decide whether he should be considered sane or not when they hand down their verdict in mid-July.

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Man escapes house torture horror in Norway
Two people arrested in connection with the torture of a man in Sandefjord, south-east Norway. Photo: Sandefjord. Norway Shutterstock

Man escapes house torture horror in Norway

A Norwegian man escaped and required medical care for knife wounds after having been held captive and tortured in an apartment in central Sandefjord on Wednesday. READ  

Interview
Meet Norway's raining kings of fashion
T-Michael (left) and Alexander Helle of fashion label Norwegian Rain. Photo: Norwegian Rain

Meet Norway's raining kings of fashion

The design duo behind Norwegian Rain, Norway's award-winning fashion brand, tell The Local how making rainwear that is both functional and stylish is not all grey skies. READ  

300 oil companies hacked in Norway

300 oil companies hacked in Norway

Around 300 oil and energy in Norway companies has been affected by one of the biggest computer hacking attacks ever to happen in the country, a government source said on Wednesday. READ  

Breivik's lawyer defends Øyer murder suspect
Geir Lippestad, Anders Behring Breivik's defence lawyer. Photo: Håkon Mosvold Larsen / NTB scanpix

Breivik's lawyer defends Øyer murder suspect

Kim Andreas Kristiansen, charged for the murder of his stepfather in Øyer, has hired Geir Lippestad as his defence lawyer when he returns to Norway. READ  

Hollywood star set to take the stage in Norway
US actor Bill Pullman will take to the stage in Bergen from December. Photo: Actor Bill Pullman Shutterstock

Hollywood star set to take the stage in Norway

American actor Bill Pullman will draw theatre audiences to Bergen when he takes the lead part in a Shakespeare play, it was announced on Tuesday. READ  

Martin Ødegaard may still play against England
Will Norway's Martin Ødegaard sit out the friendly against England on September 3rd? Photo: Torstein Bøe / NTB scanpix

Martin Ødegaard may still play against England

Martin Ødegaard, football's 15-year-old Norwegian sensation, may have been left out of the squad to face England on September 3rd, it was announced on Monday, but the national coach has not ruled out the midfielder's late inclusion. READ  

Norway prospers as wealth fund value soars
Finance Minister Siv Jensen announces Norway's booming fortunes from oil. Photo: Tor Erik Schrøder / NTB scanpix

Norway prospers as wealth fund value soars

Public spending could get a boost in Norway after it was revealed the country's sovereign wealth fund could reach six trillion kroner ($973 billion), the Norwegian government said on Monday. READ  

Norway's teachers may strike for months
Norway's schoolchildren face an uncertain future as the teachers strike continues.Photo: Shutterstock

Norway's teachers may strike for months

Every day of the teacher's strike is costing Norway 10 million kroner ($1.62 million) a day, and with the teachers' unions holding over 700 million kroner ($115 million) in account, the action could continue for many months. READ  

Øyer murder: Suspect stepson hands himself in
Kim Andreas Kristiansen is wanted for his stepfather's murder in Øyer. Photo: Police / NTB scanpix.

Øyer murder: Suspect stepson hands himself in

The key suspect in the hunt for the Øyer killer turned himself in to Dutch police on Monday. READ  

Armed raiders ransack Norwegian poker players
Norwegian poker players were robbed by a masked gang during a poker game in Sweden. Photo: Vintage casino game Shutterstock

Armed raiders ransack Norwegian poker players

Around 15 people, most of them Norwegians, were robbed at gunpoint as they played poker in Strömstad, Sweden last week. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
National
Second death within hours at Chess Olympics
National
Norway and Sweden mark 200 years of peace
Culture
Interview: Helene Meldahl, selfie artist
Society
Now serving ... Norway's smallest bar
Travel
Floating Northern Lights hotel planned in Norway
National
Circus camel escapes again
National
Swiss bus driver charged with careless driving in fatal Norway crash
Society
Brit's charity tractor trek heads for Norway
National
Norway lifts Segway ban
Culture
GALLERY: Ten great songs about Norway
Society
Høie promises to reform sex change law
Education
Norway fjord invaded by monster jellyfish
Culture
VIDEO: Norwegian anti-Facebook film goes viral
Culture
Norway pop duo hits number 4 on US charts
Sport
Norway fan wins big on Suarez bite bet
National
Solberg 'most chatty' leader on Twitter
Culture
British Airways takes 'Slow TV' to the skies
International
Top Norway lawyers back Snowden Nobel
Society
Buy your own Viking warship for just €160,000
Politics
Norway PM beats Candy Crush level 300
Culture
Norway sticks with fårikål as national dish
International
Cold bathing craze leads to teen death
Society
Sweden threatens to 'annex' the ostehøvel
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

304
jobs available