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Police nail screw thief

Bavarian police have finally nabbed a man who spent months stealing screws from road signs. Officials, who were running out of the special screws needed, are said to be very relieved.

Police nail screw thief
Photo: DPA

A vigilant driver called the police after noticing the man working on a roadside warning lamp late on Saturday evening. He was reportedly wearing a headlamp, and kept hiding whenever a car approached.

Officers arrived to find a man who fit the description of a screw-thief who had evaded them for months, taking the screws from road signs around the small village of Peiting.

“He had a large number of nuts and appropriate tools with him,” police chief Rudolf Fischer told the Münchner Merkur newspaper.

“He quickly admitted that he had been dismantling road signs for some time,” Fischer added.

Police later found kilos of stolen screws, nuts and eyelets in the man’s home. They believe that he was motivated by a simple mania for collection.

The 54-year-old man, who had no other convictions, was apparently psychologically disturbed and is receiving care. It is still unclear whether he can be made liable for his actions, which caused an estimated damage of €800.

“We are still missing a few road signs,” said Fischer.

Franz Multerer, local authority construction chief, greeted the news with relief. “Thank God,” he said, explaining that he was beginning to wonder how he was supposed to re-attach the signs in the future.

Multerer intends to contact the police as soon as possible to ask for the screws back. “Because they’re all mine!” he explained.

The Local/bk

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CRIME

German jailed for life in double police murder

A German man was given a life sentence on Wednesday for shooting dead two police officers to escape being caught for illegal game hunting during a routine traffic check.

German jailed for life in double police murder

The regional court in Kaiserslautern found 39-year-old Andreas Schmitt guilty of the killings in January this year, which sent shockwaves across Germany.

His co-defendant, referred to by the court as Florian V., was found guilty of abetting illegal poaching.

The 33-year-old was in the car with Schmitt when the officers discovered dead game in the boot, investigators said.

“We are all to this day horrified that a supposed routine control could turn into a fatal incident,” Interior Minister Nancy Faeser said in a statement after the verdict.

READ ALSO: German prosecutors say poaching led to double police murder

The victims were a 24-year-old woman police officer still in training and her colleague, a 29-year-old man.

The young woman was killed by a single shot to the head, while the man was shot four times, investigators said.

The officers were able to report that they were checking a suspicious vehicle and that shots were being fired before radio contact broke off.

When backup arrived, the woman was already dead and the man fatally injured. The perpetrators had fled the scene.

The crime in the Kusel district of Rhineland-Palatinate state triggered a major manhunt, with police deploying helicopters and sniffer dogs, sealing off roads and warning local residents not to pick up hitchhikers.

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