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CRIME

Car park murder cops arrest another teenager

After the embarrassment of holding the wrong man for three days, police hunting the killer of a young girl in northern Germany have arrested another suspect – with reports that his DNA matches traces found at the scene of the crime.

Car park murder cops arrest another teenager
Photo: DPA

“We’re not talking about circumstantial evidence anymore, but of a DNA match, of hard, incriminating evidence,” public prosecutor Bernard Südbeck investigating the case in Emden told the Bild am Sonntag on Sunday.

The paper said police created an identikit picture from detailed descriptions given to them by passers-by who claimed to have seen a man dressed in black at the car park in the town’s city centre where the 11-year-old girl Lena’s body was found.

The 18-year-old was taken into custody on Saturday and a DNA sample taken, which led prosecutors to apply to a court to hold him in investigative custody.

Meanwhile, another teenager who was arrested last week and then released has fled the area with his family and is currently under police protection after violent threats against him were posted on the internet.

Südbeck has said he regretted having arrested the wrong man, but defended the police as having acted “highly professionally,” in the paper on Sunday.

DPA/The Local/jlb

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CRIME

German man jailed for killing petrol station worker in mask row

A 50-year-old German man was jailed for life Tuesday for shooting dead a petrol station cashier because he was angry about being told to wear a mask while buying beer.

German man jailed for killing petrol station worker in mask row

The September 2021 murder in the western town of Idar-Oberstein shocked Germany, which saw a vocal anti-mask and anti-vaccine movement emerge in response to the government’s coronavirus restrictions.

The row started when 20-year-old student worker Alex W. asked the man to put on a mask inside the shop, as required in all German stores at the time.

After a brief argument, the man left.

The perpetrator – identified only as Mario N. – returned about an hour and a half later, this time wearing a mask. But as he bought his six-pack of beer to the till, he took off his mask and another argument ensued.

He then pulled out a revolver and shot the cashier in the head point-blank.

On Tuesday, the district court in Bad-Kreuznach convicted Mario N. of murder and unlawful possession of a firearm, and handed him a life sentence.

READ ALSO: Shock in Germany after cashier shot dead in Covid mask row

Under German law, people given a life sentence can usually seek parole after 15 years. His defence team had sought a sentence of manslaughter, rather than murder.

At the start of the trial, prosecutor Nicole Frohn told how Mario N. had felt increasingly angry about the measures imposed to curb the pandemic, seeing them as an infringement on his rights.

“Since he knew he couldn’t reach the politicians responsible, he decided to kill him (Alex W.),” she said.

Mario N. turned himself in to police the day after the shooting.

German has relaxed most of its coronavirus rules, although masks are still required in some settings, such as public transport.

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