A man walking down the street in the Schöneberg district of the city on Tuesday afternoon heard cries for help, Berlin's state prosecutor told The Local.
“She had managed to drag herself to the window and was calling for help despite being tied to a chair, gagged and having suffered terrible mutilating injuries,” said Martin Steltner, the prosecutor's spokesman.
Her ten-year-old daughter had also been tied to a chair and gagged but was physically unharmed.
“It would seem we are dealing with a crime of jealousy. It's horrific.”
Steltner said the 36-year-old woman was a refugee from Iran. “It's a terrible situation, terrible,” he said. Her boyfriend had Dutch citizenship but was originally from Iraq, he said.
“He is on the run,” he added, confirming the 45-year-old was the main suspect in the case. The woman's husband, who does not live in Berlin, is not a suspect.
She was taken to hospital, and is said to be out of danger. Her daughter suffered severe shock and was placed in the care of city authorities.
One neighbour is said to have heard a woman screaming.
“I saw how medics carried a woman covered in blood into an ambulance,” she told the Tagesspiegel. The woman and her daughter were said to have only recently moved into the building.