SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina | Bosnia police launch major manhunt for suspect in killings

SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina (AP) — Police in Bosnia said Monday they have launched a manhunt for a suspect in the killings of two people in the past week that has triggered panic in the country.

Police have called on the public to be vigilant and have appealed to citizens to report any sightings of 42-year-old Edin Gacic, saying he is armed and dangerous.

Police haven’t established a motive for the killings, and Bosnians have expressed fears about a gunman on the loose apparently selecting people to kill at random.

Gacic had served two prison sentences for murder in the past but was released in 2017 after serving two-thirds of the 20-year term. His victims had been a former Islamic fighter and Gacic’s own mother.

Bosnian media have reported that Gacic himself had served in a unit comprising Islamic extremists that fought alongside Bosnia’s Muslim-led government during the 1992-95 war.

Police suspect Gacic killed a grocery store owner near Konjic, southwest of Sarajevo, and a policeman in Suhodol, a village south of the capital city, in the past week.

“We are checking any information we get, all police agencies have been engaged,” said Aljosa Campara, who heads the police in the Muslim-Croat half of Bosnia. “We are doing all we can to protect the citizens.”

In Suhodol, a villager who identified himself only by his first name, Mujo, said he is afraid.

“Of course I am scared,” said the man, suggesting villagers might flee the area. “I won’t just sit here and wait for him to kill me.”

By Associated Press