Suspect told murdered American student he was going to kill people: report

A 23-year-old Rotterdam man arrested for involvement in the murder of 21-year-old American student Sarah Papenheim told her that he was going to kill three people, one of Sarah's friends told American news service ABC News.

Sarah was found stabbed to death in her Rotterdam student home on Wednesday. The police arrested the 23-year-old man at Eindhoven station a short time later. Sarah and the suspect lived on the same block and knew each other, the police said. ABC identifies the suspect as Joel S., based on sources.

Sarah's friend Adam Pryor told ABC that he received text messages from Sarah a week or so before her murder in which she said that her roommate told her that he was going to kill three people. "I work full time and I have school full time and everything is just so fucked up right now. My roommate told me he is going to kill three people, so I'm gonna have to go to the police", she said in the messages according to Pryor. Whether she actually went to the police is not clear. 

According to Sarah's mother Donee Odegard, Sarah and S. bonded over music. He is a talented cello player, but has a tendency to get angry and she was the only one who could calm him down, Odegard said to ABC. She told her daughter "not to be around him, but Sarah refused. According to her mother, Sarah said: "Mom, he is my friend. I am his only friend. He would get angry, but I can always talk him down and change his mind."

S. was arraigned on Friday and remanded into custody for another two weeks. 


Related stories