American studying abroad brutally murdered by roommate: reports

American studying abroad brutally murdered by roommate: reports

December 16, 2018

A 21-year-old American college student studying in the Netherlands was found dead in a pool of blood after allegedly being stabbed by her roommate, according to local reports.

Minnesotan Sarah Papenheim, who was studying psychology at Erasmus University in Rotterdam, was brutally attacked in her apartment about a block from the campus Wednesday afternoon, CBS Minnesota reported.

“They found her in a bath of blood, stabbed to death and beat up and stabbed for no reason, but trying to be his friend,” Papenheim’s mother, Donee Odegard, told FOX 9.

The suspected stabber, whom authorities describe as her roommate, took off after the slaying, but cops captured him getting off a train in Eindhoven, about 60 miles southeast of Rotterdam.

Odegard recalled that her daughter often complained about her roommate’s temper, and that he had lots of mood swings, FOX 9 reported. Odegard advised Papenheim to get out — but her daughter refused, saying she was his “only friend.”

Papenheim’s brother died of suicide just three years ago, and she’d decided to focus her studies on suicide in her brother’s memory, her mom told the outlet.

“I’ve been through this before,” Odegard said. “I’ve cried so much, my ducts are dry. I am in the angry stage now.”

Rotterdam police are continuing to investigate, spokesman Roland Ekkers told ABC 5.

“This is obviously a very, very tragic case,” Ekkers said. “We are somewhat happy we could arrest the suspect so soon, but that’s only a small drop in the pain that the family must feel. So our thoughts are with them.”

Those who knew Papenheim also described her as a talented drummer. About a year and a half ago, she played drums with the Bernard Allison Group in Bonn, Germany, video shows.

Renowned Minneapolis drummer Jellybean Johnson said he was impressed by her talent.

“I liked her because she hit the drums just as hard as guys did,” Johnson told CBS Minnesota. “So I nicknamed her ‘Thumper.’”

One of Papenheim’s bandmates, George Moye, said he was devastated by her death.

“The thing that is going through my head is that she was coming home for Christmas, and we were all so excited to see her and to hear that she was coming back that way, and that was just tragic,” Moye said.

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