Criminal found in attic after dramatic jail break

German police launched and then called off a manhunt on Monday after a dangerous criminal sawed through the bars of his prison window and disappeared over the roof – only to be found hiding in an attic room.

Criminal found in attic after dramatic jail break
Photo: DPA

Wardens at Bochum prison went to check the 50-year-old man’s cell after he failed to turn up for breakfast – and found the sawn-off bars at his open cell window.

A manhunt was launched for the prisoner who has been in jail since 1983, for crimes including a robbery in which a person died, for which he was given a life sentence.

“I don’t know whether he received a cake recently, but the entire incident is like something out of a film,” a spokesman for the Bochum police told The Local on Monday.

“We don’t know where he got the saw from, but he sawed through the bars on his window and escaped onto the roof. His cell was on the top floor so he was able to get onto the main roof of the building.”

Authorities thought he must have jumped from the main roof onto the flat roof of another building and from there, over the perimeter wall, where they thought an accomplice had been waiting.

But in the afternoon a sharp-eyed prison employee found the man in an attic room, a police spokesman said.

“We can breathe a big sigh of relief,” the spokesman told The Local.

“He is really a dangerous man and we were very worried at the idea of him being free.”

The man put up no resistance when he was found. An investigation will be launched to try to find out how he managed to get hold of a saw.

The Local/hc

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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.