98-year-old woman killed by sex attacker: witness

Two witnesses have claimed that 98-year-old murder victim Hilda Feste was sexually abused before being beaten to death in Os, western Norway, on Sunday evening.

98-year-old woman killed by sex attacker: witness
Photo: Marit Hommedal/Scanpix

A phone operator in Hamarøy in the north of the country was the first to realize that Feste was in distress after the 98-year-old set off her emergency medical alarm.

Since the alarm allows for two-way communication, the operator heard what was happening in the apartment, newspaper Bergens Tidende reports.

According to alarm operator service HT Safe, and officials from Os council, the operator placed a call to the town’s home-care service after failing to establish verbal contact with Feste.

The home-care nurse on duty in the building next door to the Feste’s was then sent to the woman’s apartment at the Oshaugen care facility.

When the care worker looked through the window and saw the woman being attacked, she retreated to a safe location and notified the police.

The nurse then phoned two of her colleagues who were working nearby. Together, the three of them entered Feste’s apartment, where they found the 98-year-old woman in a shocking condition.

Prosecution lawyer Asbjørn Onarheim has refused to either confirm or deny that Feste had been sexually abused.

A preliminary post mortem report has shown that Feste died from massive head injuries.

Police have not made any arrests.

“We’re facing a murder case with an unknown culprit,” said Onarheim.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.


Have Norway’s new electric scooter rules had an impact? 

New rules for e-scooter users, such as those caught using the devices over the blood alcohol limit losing their licences, were introduced this summer. However, opinions are mixed on whether the regulations are necessary.

Have Norway's new electric scooter rules had an impact? 

In June, a raft of new rules to try and regulate the use of e-scooters in Norway were introduced. The new set of national laws followed Oslo tightening up in 2021. 

Among the headline changes were the introduction of a blood alcohol limit, age limits and a requirement for both rental firms and e-scooter owners to have liability insurance. Owners of electric scooters have until next year to insure the devices. 

Enforcement of the rules has made national headlines in Norway. Recently, a woman was fined 80,000 kroner, and a man was fined 88,800 kroner, in separate incidents, for being caught over the blood alcohol limit of 0.2 while using the devices. 

Police in Stavanger, west Norway, has said the new rules, particularly the drink driving limit, have had a noticeable effect. 

“Although we still catch people with blood alcohol levels on these scooters, I would probably say that there are noticeably fewer now. The new rules and media coverage have helped,” Aleksander Naley, from the traffic section at Stavanger police station, told local publication Stavanger Aftenposten

However, not everyone is on board with the new rules. Law Professor at the University of Bergen, Hans F. Marthinussen, has said the new, tighter restrictions are excessive. 

“It is meaningless. It is hair-raisingly strict. There is no reasonable match between what they (offenders) have done and the punishment they receive. It’s like cutting off people’s hands because they steal. The Ministry of Transport must come in and clean it up,” the professor told NRK at the end of August. 

The professor’s comments came after the two that were fined for using the e-scooters while over the limit also lost their driving licences. 

State secretary at the Ministry of Transport, Mette Gundersen, told Stavanger Aftenblad that the new rules were necessary due to the high number of injuries involving those who have ridden the scooters while intoxicated. 

She added that as case law surrounding drink-driving cases involving scooters develops, courts would better balance the severity of the punishment with the risk of being over the blood alcohol limit on the devices posed.