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Crime News Deadly Waters with Captain Lee

Inventor's Lies Exposed After Murdering Swedish Journalist During Submarine Trip

Kim Wall was meeting with Peter Madsen for an interview when the horrific crime occurred.

By Joe Dziemianowicz

On August 10, 2017, Swedish journalist Kim Wall boarded the homemade submarine, UC3 Nautilus, in Copenhagen to interview self-taught Danish engineer and inventor Peter Madsen.

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Wall, 30, was never seen alive again.

On August 11, officials rescued Madsen from his sinking submarine, but Wall was nowhere to be found. Ten days later, Wall’s headless torso washed up on a beach in Denmark. Her head and legs were recovered later, the BBC reported.

What happened to her? Here's what to know about the disturbing case.

Who was Kim Wall?

A globetrotting freelance journalist whose work appeared in The New York TimesThe Guardian, and Time magazine, Wall graduated from the London School of Economics and Columbia University.

Ingrid Wall, the victim’s mother, hailed her daughter in a Facebook post as a journalist who “gave a voice to weak, vulnerable and marginalized people. But that has now been silenced," according to CNN.

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What happened on the Nautilus?

On August 11, Wall was reported missing by her partner when she failed to return from an interview she had scheduled on the Nautilus with Madsen, the BBC reported.

Peter Madsen G

Later that day, emergency services searched the sea around Copenhagen. The submarine was spotted from a lighthouse located between Denmark and Sweden. Within an hour of the sighting, the vessel sank and Madsen had to be rescued.

DNA from the torso, which had been weighed down with metal to submerge it, matched genetic material from Wall's hairbrush and toothbrush, according to the BBC account. Traces of Walls blood were discovered on the submarine, the outlet reported.

Madsen initially claimed that he dropped Wall off safely on land after their interview, but later said that she died after being struck by a heavy hatch. He then changed his account again, claiming she inhaled poisonous exhaust gas, The Independent reported.

Kim Wall G

The autopsy found no sign of exhaust gasses in Wall’s lungs or signs of a head injury. The post-mortem did reveal that Wall’s torso had 15 stab wounds, The Guardian reported.

Did Peter Madsen confess?

Madsen ultimately confessed to dismembering Wall’s body, but he claimed that it was not his intention to kill her.

Madsen alleged he dismembered Wall in a state of “suicidal psychosis” before sinking his own submarine, according to PEOPLE. "I had no more plans in this world other than to sink the Nautilus," he claimed.

Police also said footage of women being tortured, strangled, and beheaded had been found on Madsen’s computer. He denied the videos were his, The Independent reported.

Madsen was charged with murder, dismemberment, and indecent handling of a corpse, Newsweek reported. Prosecutors believe that Madsen killed Wall as part of a sadistic sexual fantasy, according to The Guardian.

In April 2018, Peter Madsen, was convicted on all three charges and he was sentenced to life in prison.

It remains unclear exactly how Wall died. 

In 2021, 50-year-old Madsen received an additional 21 months behind bars for staging a bomb threat in order to escape. He was recaptured a short time later.  

There have been other disturbing killings that have occurred on the water. In the newest Oxygen show, Deadly Waters with Captain Lee, which premieres June 1 at 9/8c on Oxygen, Below Deck's Captain Lee" will unravel the secrets of remarkable homicide investigations on rivers, lakes and even the open seas, and will expose the murky, maritime clues that sunk the perps and ultimately led to their capture. Interviews with victims’ families, boating experts and law enforcement uncover new evidence and disturbing revelations, taking viewers on a dangerous and unforgettable voyage," according to a press release.