Is This The Most Famous Unsolved Murder In Finland?

Compared to the United States (via Pew Research), Finland has a much lower homicide rate. According to the Ministry of the Interior, only "95 violent offenses resulted in death" in 2020. It might come as no surprise, then, that when a horrific crime occurs in Finland it's downright shocking, especially when it remains unsolved. Per All That's Interesting, the Lake Bodom Murders is one such case. On June 4 1960, four friends headed to Lake Bodom, near Espoo, Finland, for a camping trip.

Per Mental Floss , the group included 15-year-old Anja Tuulikki Mäki and Maila Irmeli Björklund, along with their 18-year-old boyfriends, Seppo Antero Boisman and ​​Nils Wilhelm Gustafsson respectively. By 10:30 pm, Historic Mysteries writes that the teenagers went to sleep in one tent. After that, it's unknown what exactly occurred. However, it's believed that sometime between 4 and 6 a.m., the unthinkable occurred. Someone made their way into the campsite and stabbed and bludgeoned Maki, Björklund, and Boisman to death (per Ranker). Only Gustafsson, who was gravely injured, survived.

The aftermath of the brutal incident was first discovered by two young bird watchers who noted that the tent seemed destroyed. They also witnessed a blonde man walking away from the campsite. Despite this, it would be hours until the bodies were discovered by another man who passed by the tent. Authorities were quickly notified and immediately got to work in the search for a suspect.

The sole survivor of the Lake Bodom Murders was put on trial

When Gustafsson was questioned on who had murdered his friends, he replied that he had seen a "shadowy figure" (via Mental Floss). According to All That's Interesting, the police came up with a few suspects, including Karl Valdemar Gyllström and Hans Assmann. Gyllström had reportedly "drunkenly confessed to the murders." Although he was investigated, Ranker reports that there was nothing to tie him to the murders. Oddly, Gyllström later drowned in Lake Bodom.

As for Assmann, he was alleged to be a former KGB officer living near the lake. He matched the description of the blonde man the young bird watchers had seen. Many reported that he had been acting suspicious right after the murders had occurred. He had even visited a nearby hospital wearing blood-stained clothes (per Historic Mysteries). However, the police found that he had a "solid alibi." The next suspect was none other than Gustafsson. In March 2004, 44 years after the murders, Gustafsson was arrested and put on trial, per All That's Interesting.

Using DNA testing, police found that Gustafsson's shoes had all three victims' blood. They alleged that he became too drunk, which ultimately led to a disagreement with Boisman. Gustafsson was promptly kicked out of the tent and in a "blind rage" murdered his friends. He then attacked himself to make it seem like someone else had committed the crime. Ultimately, there was not enough evidence to convict Gustafsson and he was acquitted in 2005. As of 2022, the Lake Bodom Murders remain unsolved.