Guard killed by own gun at Swedish PM's residence

STOCKHOLM Fri Nov 9, 2012 11:33pm IST

Police officers gather outside the Sagerska Palace, the residence of Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt, in central Stockholm November 9, 2012. REUTERS/Bertil Enevag Ericson/Scanpix Sweden

Police officers gather outside the Sagerska Palace, the residence of Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt, in central Stockholm November 9, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Bertil Enevag Ericson/Scanpix Sweden

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STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - A security guard at Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt's residence was killed by a bullet fired from his own gun on Friday in what police said was being investigated as a suicide or accidental shooting.

The prime minister was not at home at the time.

"We can confirm that a security guard was found dead from a gunshot wound from, as far as we can ascertain, his own service weapon," Stockholm police spokesman Sven-Erik Olsson said.

Police immediately ringed the Stockholm residence. The incident caused alarm in a country where a prime minister was gunned down in the street in 1986 and a foreign minister was stabbed and killed in a department store in 2003.

Police are investigating the death as a suicide or work-related accident and said the man, whose identity was not disclosed, was found inside the house in a small space adjoining his work area by a colleague returning from a lunch break.

"Already at an initial stage there were no signs that a crime had been committed. Our investigators are working on it and have found nothing to indicate any further people had been involved," Olsson said.

Police said that when officers arrived at the Sagerska Hus residence in downtown Stockholm the wounded man was still alive but he later died of his injuries.

The guard worked for a security services company and was not part of Reinfeldt's personal bodyguard but had full clearance to be in the building, police said.

Reinfeldt has been in power since 2006 at the head of a centre-right coalition that has trimmed Sweden's cradle-to-grave welfare state and cut taxes.

Police have still not solved the 1986 murder of Prime Minister Olof Palme, who was gunned down while walking home with his wife from the cinema.

The killer of Foreign Minister Anna Lindh, stabbed while shopping in a department store, escaped after the crime, but was eventually arrested and jailed.

(Reporting by Patrick Lannin, Johan Ahlander, Johan Sennero; Editing by Alistair Scrutton and Michael Roddy)

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