It was reported by local media that on the day of Christmas Eve there was a shoot-out one of Reykjavík’s neighborhoods. There are still speculations concerning the reasons behind the incident, but it is very likely we are talking about a case of attempted murder. The fact there was a conspicuous group of armed men opening fire in full day is of course very serious. It’s even more serious that only six of these armed men were arrested by the police, while the others, their leader included, managed to escape. What is more disconcerting though, at least as I see it, is that those men were shooting at the wrong building! At least, that’s what appears to be the case according to the well-informed. Yes, a stupid error, but an error that could cost the life of a whole family and of their neighbors as well.
But it’s not the first time crime in the capital area misses its target, or so it seems. I know of cases of break-ins in our own neighborhood that were also aimed at the wrong apartments: the criminal broke into the apartment and then left like it were nothing because — guess what? — for a mistake he entered the wrong window! How do you like it?
The Icelandic police seems also to like a lot to use the “wrong target” excuse when they do not know how to justify their lack of clues. A few months ago, in the occasion of the infamous murder of Hafnarfjörður, the police also affirmed at first that it was a case of mistaken identity — the murderer killed the wrong person for an error! –, but this then proved to be incorrect.
I am sure similar examples could be found in impressive amounts if one were to accurately look for them. So, that’s a lot of errors, isn’t it? What are the criminals of Iceland thinking? They cannot even do their work in a professional way without making mistakes all the time? Or are these actually just a lies or partial truths for the benefit of the public?
This inevitably brings about some reflection: crime in Iceland, and in the capital area especially, is slowly changing — for the worse, that is. Being Iceland still a relatively peaceful country, with a relatively safe environment also in the more urbanized areas, people have not yet developed appropriate antibodies; the average police, although well-trained, also don’t seem to be up to the task of effectively confronting the increase of crime in the case it went out of hand in the immediate future. As I said, the situation is still pretty much under control right now: despite the aforementioned examples, crime and consequent fear that are so common in the majority of other countries are definitely not the the general lifestyle rule here. But I am sure common people are wondering what is going to happen if and when Iceland will be forced to join the EU, with its criminal standards that are completely out of proportions for this country?