Mum shoots daughter over Aussie holiday plan

A woman from Düsseldorf who shot her daughter multiple times before ending her own life this week was trying to stop the teen travelling to Australia, it emerged on Wednesday.

Mum shoots daughter over Aussie holiday plan
Photo: DPA

At around noon on Monday, an apartment block in the normally peaceful town of Alt-Heerdt in Düsseldorf echoed with the sound of gunfire.

An argument between a mother and her 18-year-old daughter had escalated rapidly before the 44-year-old woman had allegedly reached for a weapon.

She then reportedly shot the teen five to six times, with a small-calibre target pistol.

With life-threatening injuries, the teenager dragged herself out of the second-floor apartment and onto the street, where a nearby construction worker gave her first aid and notified emergency services.

Meanwhile, the mother barricaded herself in the apartment.

By the time police officers got to the scene, the 44-year-old was in critical condition.

After locking herself in the apartment, she had shot herself in the head.

Both mother and daughter were rushed to hospital, where the older woman later died of her injuries.

The daughter remains in intensive care, but is “on the road to recovery”, police said on Tuesday.

A member of the Düsseldorf Shooting Club, the 44-year-old has competed in nationwide competitions, reports Bild.

She owned a valid gun license allowing her to keep the weapon at home.

Argument was about Australia visit

“The argument centred around a long-term visit abroad that the daughter had planned, and which she planned to set off on that day,” a police spokesperson said on Wednesday.

The 18-year-old supposedly wanted to travel to Australia, Bild reports.

“A family drama like this doesn't arise out of nothing,” criminal psychologist Rudolf Egg told Bild. “Things must have been building up for a while.”

The trip abroad was likely the tipping point for the mother, Egg explained.

“Great closeness, affection and love can turn instantly to hatred, anger and violent outbursts,” he continued.

“Time and time again, we see that the people we love the most are also the ones we can hate the most.”

For members


Reader question: Do all children born in Germany automatically receive German citizenship?

If a baby is born in Germany, does the child become Deutsch? The answer may not be so straightforward, for both foreign and sometimes even German parents.

Reader question: Do all children born in Germany automatically receive German citizenship?

In the US, stories abound of expecting parents who travel to the country on the brink of giving birth, and then have a baby who’s automatically granted American citizenship. 

But does the same rule – when foreign parents receive citizenship for their child in the country it’s born – also apply in Germany?

The short answer is no – at least not automatically. 

READ ALSO: EXPLAINED: Who is entitled to German citizenship by descent and how to apply for it

Contrary to what some people might assume, if a baby is born to two foreign parents in Germany, the child does not receive German citizenship upon birth, according to Germany’s Foreign Ministry. 

But there are a couple of ways in which the child can still become a German passport holder.

Parent(s) who are long-term German residents

Any child born in Germany after January 1st, 2000 to at least one foreign parent who has resided continuously in Germany for at least eight years and is a permanent resident, qualifies for German citizenship in addition to the citizenship of the parents.

But there’s a catch: according to the German Optionspflict, “the child must decide at some stage between the age of 18 and 23 whether to retain his or her German nationality or another nationality acquired by birth,” wrote the German Foreign Ministry.

The requirement to choose is only in place, however, for children who received German citizenship through a parent who’s a long-term resident of Germany.

If the parent holds a German passport, the child doesn’t need to choose, unless it’s required by the other country of which they’re a passport holder.

That means that if a foreign parent gets German citizenship after their child is born, they can also receive a German passport for their offspring.

READ ALSO: How foreigners can get fast track citizenship in Germany

A man holds a German passport in his hand.

A man holds a German passport in his hand. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Fabian Sommer

Loopholes even with a German parent 

It may seem like a given that having one German parent would grant citizenship to a child born in Germany, but that’s not always the case.

If the parents are not married and the father is German, he will need to make sure to fill out a Vaterschaftsanerkennung (recognition of paternity) before the citizenship can be claimed.

Families in which one parent is German and the other foreign also often assume that only one passport is needed, but things can get a little tricky.

Let’s say the mother is a British passport holder and the father possesses a German passport. While their offspring can easily travel to the UK without an issue, they may encounter difficulties reentering Germany unless their kid has an official deutschen Reisepass.

And it goes without saying that a child born to a German parent abroad, whether the father or mother, is also required to officially apply for a German passport in order for German nationality to be recognised.