Two dead in shooting at Dutch ‘care farm’
Two people were shot dead and two wounded on Friday at a “care farm” in the Netherlands for people with mental or social issues, police and local media said.
Dutch police said they arrested a man and recovered a firearm after the incident in Alblasserdam, overlooking the famed Kinderdijk windmills near Rotterdam, a UNESCO world heritage site.
The dead were a 16-year-old girl and a 34-year-old woman, a police spokesman at the scene was quoted as saying by the ANP news agency.
A 13-year-old boy and a 20-year-old woman were seriously wounded.
“The suspect has been arrested and the firearm has been seized. The witnesses are taken care of, help is arranged for them. The investigation is underway,” Rotterdam police said on Twitter.
The male suspect has been known to police for several years as “confused and a nuisance”, several Dutch media reported.
The shooting happened at a farm where children, young people and adults with conditions such as autism and Alzheimer’s work with animals as a form of therapy, broadcaster NOS said.
Two air ambulances had landed at the scene and numerous emergency vehicles were stationed outside the farm, it said.
The man, who lives in a village near Alblasserdam, was wanted by police in connection with the death of a shoemaker in Vlissingen, Zeeland, on Wednesday, attorney general Hugo Hillenaar told a press conference.
“Shortly after the Alblasserdam tragedy, it turned out that the suspect was the same man as the one sought by the police,” Hillenaar said.
The man has no criminal record but was known to police as a troubled individual, he said, adding the suspect went to the care farm a few years ago as a client.
He has been charged in both the Vlissingen and Alblasserdam cases.
The shoemaker in Vlissingen had been sentenced to two years in prison in 2014 for abusing his underage son, the Omroep Zeeland media reported.