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CRIME

Daredevil YouTube star goes on trial over killing pensioner

A young motorcyclist who has gained tens of thousands of followers on YouTube for his biking stunt videos is now on trial after he hit and killed an elderly pedestrian.

Daredevil YouTube star goes on trial over killing pensioner
Photo of an unrelated motorcyclist: DPA.

Prosecutors in Bremen say the 24-year-old student hit a 75-year-old pedestrian crossing the street on a red light in June, killing the older man and leaving himself seriously injured.

“If I could, I would do everything possible to undo what happened,” the defendant said in court on Monday, expressing his regrets.
 
Prosecutors argue that the 24-year-old had given in to “base motives”, and therefore are pushing for a murder conviction.
 
The 24-year-old’s YouTube channel “Alpi fährt” (Alpi drives) with more than 80,000 subscribers showed videos filmed by a helmet camera of him riding his motorcycle at high speeds. The videos have now been taken down.
 
He had also filmed the deadly crash, and investigators have been analyzing his other videos depicting risky maneuvers and near misses. Prosecutors say that before hitting the older man, he had also grazed a car with his motorcycle and fled.
 
The YouTube star had been driving at 100 kilometres per hour, even though the speed limit on the street was 50 kilometres per hour.
 
Prosecutors argue that the young man knew that at this speed he could not dodge anything in his path, but continued to drive fast anyway.
 
Fans of Alpi have argued that the older man was also at fault for crossing the street on a red light. But prosecutors argued that this is not relevant to Alpi's guilt, according to the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.
 
“As a road user, you must always take into consideration the bad behaviour of others,” said prosecutor Frank Passade. “This is ultimately why there is a speed limit.”
 
The lawyer for Alpi said that his client had not taken into consideration the risk he posed to others.
 
“Young drivers tend to underestimate risk,” the defence attorney said.
 
“Often it goes OK, but sometimes it leads to these tragic incidents that no one wanted to happen.”

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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