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Munich S-Bahn victim may have thrown the first punch

The Local · 6 Feb 2010, 17:08

Published: 06 Feb 2010 17:08 GMT+01:00

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One of the attackers, Markus Sch., 18, had drunk half a bottle of vodka and five bottles of beer, while the other, Sebastian L., 17, had consumed two bottles of beer, the report said.

They allegedly beat Brunner, 50, to death in September last year after he tried to stop them bullying a group of children.

But according to sources close to the evidence in the Munich court where the case is expected to begin in April, Brunner, who had trained for at least a year in a boxing school, had thrown the first punch, striking one of the accused in the face.

The tragic confrontation began when Brunner intervened while the two accused and a third youth were attempting to extort money out of some children on an S-Bahn commuter train.

Brunner offered to escort the children out of Solln station but the accused pair followed him off the train.

Witnesses say Brunner called out to the train driver, “There’s trouble back here” before the violence began on the train platform.

Story continues below…

There appears to be conflicting accounts from witness concerning who was aggressive, according to Spiegel. However, witnesses said the attack by the accused was particularly brutal.

Markus Sch. used a bunch of keys as a weapon while Sebastian L. held a cigarette lighter in his fist while he struck Brunner, the report said. They continued to punch and kick Brunner even after he had struck his head on a metal handrail and fallen to the ground.

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

20:22 February 6, 2010 by berlinski
I hope he landed a good one.
01:01 February 7, 2010 by wood artist
So, he offered the kids some protection, led them off of the train, the suspects followed him off of the train and continued their initial demands? Somehow it seems like the first punch, if it happened, was reasonable self defense. If the punks had stayed on the train, or simply backed off...considering they were the ones causing the problem in the first place...no one would have died.

Given only what I know from reading here, I'm thinking that "first punch" doesn't really have much importance.

01:59 February 7, 2010 by CalBill
It's clear who's in the wrong -- too bad you don't have the death penalty in Germany.
08:22 February 7, 2010 by ColoSlim
Stand up and protect yourselves! Step in to help others! Don't just stand there! Mr. Brunner is a hero. When those bullies stepped close enough to Mr. Brunner, they were the agressors and he was protecting himself and those kids. The courts have a responsibility to punish those two. If not, concerned citizens will be less likely to step in the next time. In my opinion Mr. Brunner was as brave as Rosa Parks.
13:07 February 7, 2010 by freechoice
God Bless Dominik Brunner

May he rest in peace.
22:32 February 7, 2010 by Prufrock2010
Too bad Mr. Brunner didn't have a Glock. That would have been the end of the discussion for these rat bastards.
05:06 February 8, 2010 by Talonx
Calbill, you assert that you wish they had the death penalty in Germany. You are just as monsterously violent as these two kids were. In what messed up world do 2 more deaths make the tragedy of one death less? There is no retribution in execution.

Sadly, ethical arguments probably bounce right off of you, so let me ask this, are you even aware of how much the death penalty costs? It ends up being more than lifetime incarceration. And as for acting as a deterrent to future murderers, the murder rate in the U.S. is about 5 times that of Germany (and most of the rest of europe).
08:53 February 8, 2010 by Legal E
simple tell the court that the two youths have a secret bank account in Zurich then it all changes they will be the scumm of society. But beating someone to death who may have thrown a first punch in pre-active self defense does not get the wrath of the public so much.
13:48 February 8, 2010 by Renfield2
I would image that there were people on the train when the stand off occurred, and had one or two men got off with Mr.Brunner, the situation would have quickly diffused; cowards prefer not to take on a party of equal strength. The unwillingness of people to get involved cost Mr. Brunner his life, and that's a damn shame.
18:40 February 8, 2010 by wenddiver
@Talonix-#11- The latest research from the University of Texas indicates that the death penalty is a deterent.

What isn't a deternent is the endless appeals, and hiding of the executions.

There is a direct correlation, between the amount of publicity an execution is given and the decrease in violent crime. Makes sence, maybe we should require a piture of an execution on bottles of whiskey and all packaging of illegal drugs.

My sympathies go out to the Brunner family, Mr. Brunner was a heroe.
19:19 February 8, 2010 by D R Jones
It appears to me that when drunks are bullying kids in a public place that Mr. Dominik Brunner was the only man present. He is a true hero and I extend my heart felt regrets about the loss of his life to his family. To the other men present that day that stood by and did nothing, I sincerely hope you suffer every day for the rest of your life knowing that you are cowards that stood by and let a good man die alone. I hope you see Mr. Brunner's face every night in your nightmares.
21:24 February 8, 2010 by Prufrock2010

You state: "The latest research from the University of Texas indicates that the death penalty is a deterent. [sic]."

Can you please provide a link to that "research," because I don't believe it. Texas executes people like it's going out of style, and there has been no appreciable deterrent effect in that state in the past 100 years. I have yet to see one credible study to support that proposition that the death penalty is a deterrent to murder anywhere.

In Iran, perhaps, the death penalty is a deterrent to voicing political dissent. Do we really want our societies to become like Iran?
05:38 February 9, 2010 by wenddiver
@Prifrock-I saw it on the news in Austin, Texas, which is definetly the most Liberal City in Texas. I would think if it wasn't true they would definetly raise objections in "Let's keep Austin Weired" Texas.

Texas does have an efficient court system compared to States like New York, New Jersey and Illinois that don't value the lives of their citizens enough to apply what the Courts themselves call the ultimate penalty. Let somebody see you comitt a Murder there and you won't sit on death roe long enough to die of natural causes. It should also be pointed out that Teas shares a Border with one of the iggest Narco states in the world (Mexico). Texas is a very nice place to visit and has a history of Law and Order (Judge Roy Bean, the Texas Rangers, the hunt for Bonny and Clyde) that they can be very proud of.

By the way I've lived in Iran and if we had not discouraged the Shah from apply a death penalty a certain Ayatollah that France harbored, it would be better for the people who live there.

In the end if a cock roach gets in your housee you shoulf kill it, not ask it if it has any demands of society. Ultimately, murderers are way below cockroaches. People who protect murders are lower than murders.
16:38 February 9, 2010 by Prufrock2010

I'm sure that Texans can be very proud of good ole Judge Roy Bean, the self-proclaimed "Law West of the Pecos" who had no use for little constitutional niceties such as due process or fair trials before hanging people. Texas also gave us Bush pére et fils, both mass murderers. The contributions Texas has made to society are just too numerous to mention.

I hope Texas quickly follows through on its governor's threat to secede from the United States and takes its rightful place among banana republics.
17:51 February 9, 2010 by Talonx

How did they measure, deterrence? Murder as some function of number of people executed? If you can't find the article, could you at least remember how they measured and statistically compared?

I am much intrigued this would be the only peer-reviewed study I have ever heard of that proclaimed to prove such a thing.

Then again, it sounds like the typical nightly news crowd which is only concerned with ratings. Did they end every statement with a question mark-like wilt? As in, 'The death penalty acts as a deterrent(?)'

Regardless, if you're comfortable with being just as monsterous as those you say are monsters, good luck in life.
12:35 February 24, 2010 by a.a
"The latest research from the University of Texas indicates that the death penalty is a deterent"

That's why crime rates in USA are sooooo much lower than in other countries, like Germany, that do not have the death penalty. It is much more dangerous to go out on the S-Bahn in Solln than take the NYC subway. God bless America.
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