Aabenraa, Denmark — A refugee from Syria who had settled in Denmark is being sought in connection with three murders.
According to Danish police, the remains of the man’s 27-year-old wife and their two daughters, ages 9 and 7, were found inside the couple’s home on October 30, 2016.
In South Jutland, the jurisdiction where the murders occurred, a police spokesman said in a statement,
“Police gained access to the residence, where the three bodies were found in a freezer,”
The grisly discovery was made after the wife’s brother grew concerned about not being able to reach her for several days and contacted authorities. The brother led police to the family’s apartment in a block of flats in Aabenraa, a harbor town in southern Denmark with a population of 15,814.
Investigators have made it clear that the three females were murdered, but have given no further details, other than to say that the thirty-two-year-old husband was not in the apartment at the time of the discovery and that he’s being sought by police.
Police have not said whether the husband is a suspect in the murders or is being sought merely as a witness who might help shed light on the slayings.
Although it’s known that the couple had separated, it is believed that they had kept in touch.
The police have not yet released information about exactly how or when the victims died. An autopsy cannot be performed until the frozen bodies have thawed.
Senior South Jutland police investigator Bent Thuesen reported that the three slain females were last seen alive on October 26 or 27, 2016.
Investigators are continuing to interview people who knew the family. According to one neighbor, the refugee family could not speak Danish, and they associated only with other Arabic-speaking people in the area.
A South Jutland police statement confirmed that the family were from war-torn Syria and had received official refugee status. They arrived in Denmark in the summer of 2015.
According to an eighty-one-year-old acquaintance, “They spoke only Arabic, but they were so polite and sweet. Oh god, what a pity for the two girls.”
“I’ve never seen anything from the father,” the neighbor continued. “I’ve not heard any quarrels or other commotion in the apartment below me. But I must say that I repeatedly saw anxiety on the mother’s face. My feeling was that they were a little afraid to stay here.”
The husband’s name has not yet been released to the public. He was not someone previously known to police.
Investigators are pursuing several leads but have not yet established the motive for the crimes. “Right now it’s all theories and conjecture, and we have many theories we are working on,” said senior investigator Bent Thuesen. He added, “I cannot comment on it if it turns out not to be true.”
Authorities at the German/Danish border have been given the man’s description and are on the alert should he attempt to flee south to Germany. Aabenraa is only about 1/2 hour by car from the German border.