Prosecutor tight-lipped regarding Viljandi school-shooting

Lõuna ringkonnaprokuratuuri juhtivprokurör Kaire Hänilene.

PHOTO: Risto Mets

Last Wednesday, Prosecutor’s Office took the stand of having nothing to say publicly about the school shooting in Viljandi, and the process of investigation will not be commented.

Yesterday, it was announced by Southern Prosecutor’s Office press representative Kristina Kostina that the suspect has been prescribed expert assessments while collection of evidence is underway in order to clarify circumstances and causes of the event. «However, it is not possible at the moment to disclose the new information,» was how her curt written message to Sakala, the local newspaper, ended.

To our knowledge, prosecutor Kaire Hänilene has ordered both forensic psychiatric and psychological expert assessment to define the health condition of Vahur (15) who admitted to the shooting. It is largely up to the doctors’ evaluation whether in court the prosecutor will only need to prove that the youth shot and killed the teacher, or if the court will also have to clarify the causes of the tragic event.

The first will suffice if, by doctors’ decision, Vahur will have to be sent to coercive treatment for indefinite time period. In that case, no punishment will be imposed.

Neither the prosecutor nor Vahur’s defence lawyer Mihkel Graver will disclose if the young man has again been interrogated after the initial questioning. A week ago, Kaire Hänilene did say that as long as the shooter is under doctors’ supervision, the investigation will rather focus on witnesses and expert assessments.

Separately, it is being investigated how the boy got hold of his father’s gun. The prosecutor has said the gun was in a separate locker. According to investigation data, the boy found the key to the locker – and it is up to the investigator’s to find out if the key was hidden well enough. Suspicion or accusation has not been brought against anyone, but while the investigation is underway, no-one has excluded an accusation for negligence regarding the firearm.

The preliminary investigation carries no time limit. Vahur has not been arrested but is under supervision of doctors and is receiving treatment. For forensic expert assessments, the doctors have been granted one month – these ought to be ready by November 28th. In case the experts will need more time, up to three months may be additionally granted to complete the documents.