Kim Wall would have celebrated her 31st birthday today. Instead, the fourth day of the trial of the man accused of murdering her took place in Courtroom 41 at Copenhagen City Court – a switched venue as Courtroom 60 is being used for another case.
A short day was scheduled with only six witnesses due to give their testimony, of whom several opted to speak behind closed doors.
One of the witnesses had a deeply personal relationship with Madsen, and it is believed her testimony will be referred to later in the trial but remain unreported until then.
The view of the submarine’s cleaner
Perhaps the most telling testimony of the day came from Peter Madsen’s male intern, as he cleaned the submarine on the day of the killing and was therefore the last other person to board it before the ill-fated voyage.
The prosecutor therefore sought to use his recollections to detail an itinerary of what was normally on board, thus building a case that Madsen took certain items on board with a view to committing murder.
Screwdriver, saw and steel pipes not normally on board
The intern had never seen the 60 cm screwdriver, which it is believed Madsen stabbed Wall with, onboard the submarine. Likewise, he had never seen the saw Madsen used to cut up her body, or the steel pipes that were used to weight down the body parts.
The intern had never seen Madsen take a change of clothing on board or the green water hose that was later found – particularly as he would have used it when he was cleaning the submarine.
The intern recalls Madsen buying the straps that the prosecutor claims the defendant used to restrain Wall, but could not be sure if was a week or a month before the killing.
The intern recalls how Peter Madsen was annoyed by a cancelled rocket launch on the day he is accused of killing Wall. He also recalls that the pair had discussed a chapter in a book in which the police found body parts in a drain.
Fascination with death
The intern was followed by a female witness, a friend who claimed she had never had sex with Madsen but often spoke to him about the subject. She told the court their conversations had got more extreme in the build-up to the killing. They last spoke on August 7.
Twice they spoke about sex in relation to death. They discussed the most pleasurable way to die, snuff movies, his ability to be a caring father as a “loving psychopath” and increasingly wilder fantasies, and at one point Madsen suggested she could photograph his orgy.
While another witness, a Swedish engineer aboard the cargo ship Ternvag, told how the Nautilus nearly hit the vessel, endangering the lives of the 13 people onboard.
The case will resume on Monday.