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CRIME

German police kill robber who stabbed two cops

Police in a small town near Leipzig have shot a man after he attempted to rob a betting shop and stabbed three people when confronted.

German police kill robber who stabbed two cops
Naumburg's cathedral has been a candidate for UNESCO World Heritage status in the past. Photo: DPA

State prosecutors in Saxony-Anhalt said that the robber burst into a betting shop in Naumburg, southeast of Leipzig, early this morning before threatening an employee with a knife.

They could not say whether the man was attempting to rob the gambling hall.

Police were called to the scene, which took place inside a shopping centre, at around 4 am.

A group of onlookers had gathered in front of the building and the man became violent when officers arrived, attacking police and bystanders with his knife.

Two officers suffered knife wounds, but one of them drew his weapon and shot the attacker dead, a spokesman for state prosecutors said.

“Our understanding so far is that the suspect continued slashing at people around him with the knife. One of the officers called to the scene drew his weapon and fired a shot – with deadly effect,” chief state prosecutor Hans-Jürgen Neufang told Bild.

Police have also yet to confirm the identity of the dead man.

His body will undergo an autopsy to determine the exact effect of the police officer's bullet.

Police shootings are rare in Germany, usually numbering fewer than ten each year.

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CRIME

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.

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