Kim Wall memorial grant opens for applicants so slain journalist's 'spirit will live on'

PHOTO:A 2015 file photo of the Swedish journalist Kim Wall. Tom Wall via AP Photo
A 2015 file photo of the Swedish journalist Kim Wall.

Applications are being accepted for a memorial grant established in memory of a reporter who went missing while reporting on an inventor who allegedly killed her.

Kim Wall, 30, an international freelance reporter who covered what she described as “the undercurrents of rebellion,” went missing in August after boarding a Danish inventor’s submarine for a story. Wall’s dismembered body was later found and the inventor, Peter Madsen, has been charged in the slaying.

Wall’s family and friends started to raise money in September for the Kim Wall Memorial Fund in what her parents described as an effort to ensure that their daughter’s “spirit will live on.” The fund will award a female reporter a $5,000 grant on March 23, Wall’s birthday.

PHOTO: Swedish police conducting their investigation at the scene where the body of Swedish freelance journalist Kim Wall was found, August 24, 2017. IBL/REX/Shutterstock
Swedish police conducting their investigation at the scene where the body of Swedish freelance journalist Kim Wall was found, August 24, 2017.

“We want Kim to be remembered and honored as the great journalist she was, not as a victim,” Wall’s parents, Ingrid and Joachim Wall, said in a statement released today. “We can never get Kim back, but we can see to it that her spirit will live on and inspires other young women journalists to go out in the world and cover deserving stories that rarely make it to the front pages.”

PHOTO: Divers from the Danish Defence Command preparing for a dive in Koge Bugt near Amager in Copenhagen, Aug. 22, 2017, where a womans torso was found yesterday.Scanpix Denmark/AFP/Getty Images
Divers from the Danish Defence Command preparing for a dive in Koge Bugt near Amager in Copenhagen, Aug. 22, 2017, where a woman's torso was found yesterday.

Wall reported on a range of stories including: a report on Chinese feminists attending the Women’s March in Washington, D.C., a story about a subculture passionate about all things furry and a profile of a plus-sized pole dancing queen.

A Danish prosecutor last week formally filed charges against Madsen that include murder and indecent handling of a corpse.

“This is a very unusual and extremely brutal case which has had tragic consequences for Kim Wall and her relatives,” special prosecutor Jakob Buch-Jepsen said in a statement.

The actual cause of death is unknown but Madsen may have cut Wall’s throat or strangled her, the indictment alleges, though the prosecutor hasn’t publicly addressed any motive.

The prosecutor said Madsen planned the alleged murder and is asking for life imprisonment.

Madsen has denied killing Wall, saying she died in an accident aboard the submarine. But he has pleaded guilty to the indecent handling of a corpse charge, saying he dismembered her body.

The jury trial will begin March 8 and a verdict is expected April 25.

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