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Crime News

Peter Madsen, Who Killed Journalist Kim Wall Aboard Homemade Submarine, Sentenced For Botched Prison Break

Peter Madsen, who was already serving a life sentence for killing and dismembering Kim Wall in 2017, was handed even more time behind bars this week.

By Sharon Lynn Pruitt
Peter Madsen Convicted Of Killing Journalist Kim Wall On Submarine

A Danish man previously convicted of murdering a Swedish journalist aboard his homemade submarine has been sentenced to even more time in prison following a short-lived prison escape last fall.

Peter Madsen, 50, was sentenced on Tuesday to 21 months in prison for the October 2020 escape, according to the Danish outlet Ekstra Bladet. On Oct. 20, he allegedly used a fake gun and a fake bomb he’d made in prison to talk his way out, first threatening a psychologist at the prison and then an officer; he then threatened the driver of a van to try and seize the vehicle. However, two other guards who witnessed Madsen’s escape followed him and, after authorities were able to confirm that he did not actually have a real bomb, he was arrested again, the outlet reports.

On Tuesday, a judge criticized Madsen for using his privileges within the Herstedvester Prison to plot an escape. He also ordered Madsen to pay a fine to the psychologist whom he threatened during the ordeal.

The 21 months Madsen was sentenced to this week are on top of the life sentence he'd already received in 2018 for the murder of Swedish journalist Kim Wall . On August 10, 2017, Wall, believing that Madsen was going to grant her an interview, joined him on board the UC3 Nautilus — the submarine he’d made himself and which turned him into a local celebrity. The submarine was found to have sunk the following day; when Madsen was rescued, Wall was not with him, The Guardian reports.

Wall’s dismembered body was found in the waters of Koge Bay weeks later, according to The Guardian. Madsen initially claimed that Wall had died after a heavy piece of machinery fell on her head, but he later claimed that she’d actually died after inhaling carbon monoxide while on the submarine. He said he’d dismembered her body because he needed to do so in order to remove it from the submarine and “[bury] her at sea,” according to another report from The Guardian.

However, prosecutors argued that Madsen had killed Wall as part of a sick sexual fantasy which he meticulously planned, The Guardian reports. The indictment stated that Madsen had several tools aboard, including sharpened screwdrivers, that he used to brutally abuse Wall before killing and dismembering her, according to The New York Times.

Madsen was found guilty in 2018 of premeditated murder, aggravated sexual assault, and desecrating a corpse. He was sentenced to life in prison.

Wall was a successful freelance journalist whose work appeared in The New York Times and The Guardian. Following her death, her loved ones set up the Kim Wall Memorial Fund Grant to keep her legacy alive.