• Germany's news in English

Police shoot dead man throwing bottles

The Local · 27 Feb 2012, 09:00

Published: 27 Feb 2012 09:00 GMT+01:00

Neighbours called the police in the early hours of Sunday after being disturbed by the 57-year-old man who was causing a racket throwing the bottles from his window in Maintal in the state of Hesse.

A police spokesman in Wiesbaden said the man opened the door to officers when they asked to enter his flat. But then he attacked them with a knife, and was shot dead. Several shots were fired, the spokesman said.

The investigation will seek to establish how many police officers shot him, and how often he was hit.

Die Welt daily reported on Monday that 12 people were shot dead by police over the last eight years in Hesse state alone.

The last such incident was in a Frankfurt job centre last year when a woman attacked a police officer with a knife and was shot dead.

Story continues below…

The Local/DAPD/hc

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

09:32 February 27, 2012 by Snooker
Hold on... they shot a DEAD man?

Re-read that headline.
09:38 February 27, 2012 by Simon_Kellett
Hmmm: headline does not really summarize the story does it? I guess he was shot because he attacked the police with a knife, not because he was throwing bottles.
09:40 February 27, 2012 by steve_glienicke
well snooker, i guess they shot out of fright, from seeing a dead man throwing bottles :)
10:18 February 27, 2012 by BuzzAbroad
Leave the poor translators alone ;-) Let's pretend they meant Police shoot and kill bottle-thrower, or how about Bottle-throwing man shot dead by police
10:22 February 27, 2012 by kohcherp
the next time someone claims that German laws are lax, I'll tell them "you can get shot for throwing bottles" and point them to this article. :P

(and you'll get shot till you are dead)
11:01 February 27, 2012 by dcgi
"Police shoot dead knife-wielding man throwing bottles" would have been an accurate (non-sensationalist) title
11:32 February 27, 2012 by frankiep
I don't know who is in charge of approving headlines at thelocal, but it would definitely be in their best interests to put an end to misleading and sensationalist headlines like this. It's not even mentioned until halfway through the article that the police shot the man because he attacked them with a knife.

This is the type of "journalism" I would expect from Fox and Drudge...can we now add thelocal to that list?
11:42 February 27, 2012 by Gretl
When zombies attack! Unknown whether it took the standard zombie killing double-tap.
12:04 February 27, 2012 by Ibn Sina
I think the heading is not that important. But why are the german police not able to defend a knife attack and has to shoot someone. I think they should do everything to avoid shooting at a person, even if he is a murderer. Sure they have to protect their own life and shoot only if there isn't any other way out. But was this really the case here?
12:33 February 27, 2012 by frankiep

you can't be serious. Of course the headline is misleading. Your attempt at explaining why it isn't misleading actually does a pretty good job of pointing out how it is misleading. The headline implies that the man was shot BECAUSE he was throwing bottles which is false, and, by definition, misleading.
12:39 February 27, 2012 by dcgi
@frankiep: exactly, provide and intentional lack of information in the headline and let the reader make the implication, that's Daily Mail level journalism right there, infact screw this, not visiting this awful news site from now on...
13:44 February 27, 2012 by lewis69
If you dont want to get shot dont attack the polce with a knife duh!
14:50 February 27, 2012 by frankiep

Again, you have simply proven my point. Yes, the headline's purpose is to quickly draw attention to the story. The story here is that the police shot and killed a man because he attacked them with a knife. The headline could well have been "Knife wielding man shot dead by police". Right there you have an overview of the key points of the story and enough to attract attention.

The headline actually used here would have people think that the story is that the police shot and killed a man because he was throwing bottles which is categorically false and misleading. It is a form of propaganda (Wikipedia: often presents facts selectively - thus possibly lying by omission - to encourage a particular synthesis, or uses loaded messages to produce an emotional rather than rational response to the information presented.).

If a journalist or news organisation cannot compose a headline which would attract readers to a story without being misleading or engaging in lies of omission then it most likely means one of three things:

1) The journalist or news organisation is unethical and is attempting to influence people through sensationalism (yellow journalism)

2) The journalist or news organisation doesn't know how to attract readers to a story and cannot tell the difference between pertinent and incidental facts to a story.

3) The story is not a story and does not warrant being published.

In this case we can rule out number 3 since a man being shot to death by the police is obviously an important story. That leaves 1 or 2. So the question is, does thelocal not know the difference between pertinent and incidental facts? or does thelocal want to be sensationalist and cause readers to have irrational and emotional responses to what they publish?

And by the way, if you don't see "Police shoot dead man throwing bottles" as the headline to an article where the real story (facts) is that the police shot a man who attacked them with a knife as being bad journalism, then I can only assume that your biggest and most trusted sources of "news" comes from outlets such as Drudge, Fox, and the Daily Mail.
14:52 February 27, 2012 by LancashireLad
I've seen many of these names on this forum before. Surely you have realised by now why the Local does its reporting and writing as it does. To generate comments and "discussion". Think about how this site generates its money - advertising and links to other sites such as the job boards. No good if the site has no traffic - so how does the site generate traffic? By "encouraging interesting conversation" ;-)
15:42 February 27, 2012 by SchwabHallRocks
Hey Kids,

Now you know why "communication skills" and "ethics" are so important and should be taught more:

1) The headline (as already written about) could be interpretted to mean a dead man was shot (communication failure).

2) The headline is truthful, but not forthcoming (ethical failure).

Good day.
16:10 February 27, 2012 by yourkeau
Why all of you are discussing a f^^king headline?? THE POLICE KILLED A MAN, did you notice that? He was not criminal, probably just drunk or mentally ill. Instead of pacificating him (e.g. by taser) they just killed a human being! Germany is turning into America, killing people for taxpayer's money.

Next time if I will evidence such a situation I will not call the cops because they kill people :(
16:37 February 27, 2012 by SchwabHallRocks

Don't be a douche bag...

We are discussing the headline, because that is what we want to dicuss, not because we are insenstive to the dead man.

If I sit down to eat, do I have to discuss the starving poor each time?

If I comb my hair, do I have to think about bald people?

If I wipe my ass, do I have to ponder why Afghanis use rocks, instead?
17:51 February 27, 2012 by Der Grenadier aus Aachen
I wonder why he came after them with a knife. I mean, breaking a few bottles is probably not a big deal to worry about, legally. I'm sure they would have either told him to knock it off, or given him a fine. Maybe arrested him for a short period of time.

I'm pretty sure everyone is clear on the idea that coming after the cops with a knife will get you shot pretty quick.
18:08 February 27, 2012 by XFYRCHIEF
@yourkeau - "Germany is turning into America, killing people for taxpayer's money" Can you please explain what you are talking about? When there was a story here about the use of Tasers, you were probably one of the people here castigating the police for that, too. The comment above is right - if you don't want to get shot by the police, don't attack them with a knife. I am willing to bet you have no experience confronting armed individuals, do you? Those who have never been in such a situation always knows more or has better answers than those actually involved. Since you - and others - weren't there, what gives you the right to assess the situation and make the determination that the police acted incorrectly? Would you want every decision you made to undergo scrutiny by someone who has no knowledge of how or why you made that decision?
18:49 February 27, 2012 by Dayzee
The war on Zombies has started. Let the Apocolypse come! ;-)
19:54 February 27, 2012 by yourkeau

So you basically propose me to shut up because I don't work for the police and didn't have experience in killing people.

But in Germany we have something like "freedom of speech" , don't we? You can criticize my work, too, I have no problem with this: I haven't done anything to be ashamed about, unlike these unprofessional criminals, which for some reason are called "policemen".

>if you don't want to get shot by the police, don't attack them with a knife.

If the police were wild animals like tigers or bear, you advice would have been useful. But they are humans, and they are supposed to have brains inside their heads. See, sometimes they act properly:


3 years ago a schoolboy killed 16 people in the German city of Winnenden. The police were in their right to shoot him, because he was armed and dangerous. But they didn't do it, they only shoot him in the leg. Because even the life of a criminal has a value in Europe, that's why we don't have capital punishment here, unlike in the US. If we don't have capital punishment, the police should not kill people without a reason.
20:22 February 27, 2012 by SchwabHallRocks

Don't waste your time responding to that mutton head YOURKEAU.

Yourkeau clearly is omniscient and knows what happened whereas we are reduced to reading the article with the odd ball headline which, by the way, is way more fun to discuss that YOURKEAU's revelations on police brutality.

And of course, Yourkeau is just exercising his "freedom of speech" which we do not have anywhere else in the world, but Germany.

Everyone is allowed one mistake and Mother Nature's is Yourkeau.
21:44 February 27, 2012 by Qunic-E
As a journalist with years of experience working on publications with content based on information in more than one language, I suspect that this dreadful and misleading headline came about because The Local hires inexperienced and (sometimes) incompetent journalists and/or translators. To start with, they probably don't pay them much. It is likely also that content review and proofreading are in the hands of people who are not journalists and maybe not even native English speakers.
01:55 February 28, 2012 by Valkyrie1944
"But in Germany we have something like "freedom of speech" , don't we'"

No you don't.

You are only free to say what the Government will allow. That is not freedom of speech!
04:22 February 28, 2012 by volvoman9
Well I guess they showed him. It seems you don't want to pull a knife on the police in Hesse. Have these guys ever heard if Tazers?
15:49 February 28, 2012 by raandy
The headline is a laugh.


I can understand the man being shot if he attacked with a knife,he was shot multiple times,that needs to be cleared up.

Did they knock on his door and ask him to come out ?,or were they inside when this happened,? if so did he let them in or did they force the door open? Not much to go on here, and I doubt there will be a follow up article. shabby.
12:44 February 29, 2012 by McM
'Man attempts to kill police with knife and bottle.'

Who writes the headline directs the spin.
20:27 March 1, 2012 by SamD
I once killed a gopher with a stick. I don't know what the gopher was doing with the stick, so I killed it, anyway.
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