Police have confirmed that the suspect, a 37-year-old man who lives in Kongsberg, was a Muslim convert who had previously been flagged for showing signs of radicalisation. He has been charged in connection with the attacks and remains in police custody.
One of the two people injured is believed to be an off duty officer. Both are being treated in hospital.
Police received multiple reports of a man in the town centre shooting at people with a bow and arrow at 6.12pm on Wednesday and arrived at the scene just before 6.30pm (4.30pm GMT). It’s been reported that the attack started in the Coop supermarket.
Police confirmed there was an initial confrontation with the suspect at 18.18pm but he then escaped officers by shooting several arrows at them. There were 29 minutes between the police’s initial confrontation with the man and his eventual arrest at 6.47pm. According to police, the killings “possibly” occurred after they had initial contact with the attacker.
“The man who carried out the act has been arrested by the police, and there is no active search for more people. Based on the information we have, there is one person behind this,” police chief Oeyving Aas said.
Who is the suspect?
Police confirmed the arrest of a 37-year-old Danish man in connection to the attack. According to officers he was a Kongsberg resident for many years and was known to the police.
Officers had previously been in contact with the man over signs of radicalisation following his conversion to Islam. The suspect had a Danish mother and Norwegian father.
The man was questioned for hours overnight by police and remains in custody. Police attorney Ann Iren Svane Mathiassen told news agency NTB that the suspect was “admitting to the facts of the case”.
“We’ll have to see if he also pleads guilty,” she added. Defence lawyer Fredrik Neumann said he was “cooperating” with police.
According to police additional weapons were used in the attack and enquiries are also ongoing as to whether the attack was terror related, but at this point, the police have not implicated anyone else in the attack.
Who were the victims?
Four women and one man between the ages of 50 and 70-years-old have been confirmed as the victims of the attack. They have not yet been formally identified.
According to police, their families have been informed and are being supported.
An off duty police officer is believed to be one of the two additional victims in intensive care following the attack.
The attacks took place over “a large area” of Kongsberg, a municipality of around 28,000 people 66km (41 miles) southwest of Oslo, including at a Coop Extra grocery store, the Aftenposten newspaper cited police as saying.
What happens next?
Investigations are still ongoing into the attack while the suspect remains in custody. The police said the case is being handled in “several tracks,” without further elaboration.
The attack came on the final day of Erna Solberg's conservative government, and a new justice minister takes over the case on Thursday under a centre-left coalition led by Labour leader Jonas Gahr Store.
The prime minister-designate, Jonas Gahr Stoere, who is expected to take office on Thursday, called the assault “a cruel and brutal act” in comments to Norwegian news agency NTB.