Danish police look for clues after latest motorway bridge attack

Funen Police have called for help from the public after a car was hit by an object thrown from a motorway bridge on Tuesday evening.

Danish police look for clues after latest motorway bridge attack
File photo: Henning Bagger/Ritzau Scanpix

In a press statement, police asked members of the public who were in the area near the Ravnebjerggyden road southwest of Odense, on the northern side of the E20 motorway, to call the 114 police contact telephone number.

The 38-year-old driver of the car that was hit by a rock thrown from the bridge reported the incident to police, duty officer Anders Furbo Therkelsen said.

“The report was very specific, and that enabled us to move out to the motorway in numbers. We are now trying to clarify what happened,” Therkelsen said.

Nobody was hurt during the incident, which is the latest of several similar instances of rocks being thrown from motorway bridges near Odense and elsewhere in Denmark.

In 2016, a German woman lost her life when a rock thrown from a different bridge near Odense hit a car in which she was travelling. The case, which is being treated as murder, is yet to be solved.

Police asked anyone who drove underneath the Ravnebjerggyden bridge between 8pm and 10pm on Tuesday to get in touch, including those who recall driving over an object in the vicinity.

The E20 motorway was closed temporarily following the incident, and police took the step of a second closure on Wednesday in order to continue investigations.

“It was dark yesterday, so we have chosen to look again (today). That is based on the assumption we have not found the object which hit the car,” Deputy Chief Superintendent Jørgen Andersen said.

The closure was scheduled to take place from 6:30pm between junctions 52 and 53 headed west, before a closure on the opposite side of the motorway to complete the search.

Police estimated the closures would take around an hour for each side of the motorway.  

READ ALSO: Police in Denmark hunt for 'serial criminal' behind rocks dropped on to motorway traffic


Why Copenhagen police say crime is on the up in Christiania

Crime in Copenhagen’s hippie enclave of Christiania is increasing, police in the capital say following a number of drugs-related arrests.

Why Copenhagen police say crime is on the up in Christiania

Copenhagen Police arrested three men on Saturday for selling cannabis on Pusher Street in the alternative enclave of Christiania, as they continue their efforts to stamp out the area’s former open-air cannabis market. 

According to police, 875 people were arrested for selling cannabis in the first 11 months of 2022, more than in any other year over the past four years. 

A possible explanation for the increase in arrests could be that the rewards for operating hash stands have receded, according to a police spokesperson.

“It is extremely unattractive to stand out there, and therefore a lot of new people come in who have no idea what it is all about. Many of them come from outside the catchment area, and some of them are peripherally associated with a criminal group,” Simon Hansen, head of a Copenhagen Police special unit, told newspaper Politiken.

“It’s a bit – in inverted commas – ‘easier’ for us to catch these people,” he said. 

Around half of the stalls in the street are linked to various gangs and biker gangs, such as Satudarah, Bandidos, Hells Angels and Loyal To Familia, with the rest run by people living in Christiania, the Berlingske newspaper reported earlier this month.

The trend of rising crime occurs against a background of potential housing develop in Christiania, as the enclave’s residents decide on a plan to put affordable housing in the area.

Copenhagen Police last year told news wire Ritzau that the majority of people who are arrested within Christiania come from socially underprivileged or marginalised backgrounds.

They are exploited in gang and biker circles, resulting in them in some cases operating the illicit hash market stalls, according to the police.

Conflicts between organised crime groups have reportedly become more frequently aired in the Pusher Street market.

READ ALSO: Denmark’s ‘freetown’ Christiania hangs onto soul, 50 years on