Public prosecutors said they had identified the man who kicked a 26-year-old woman down a flight of stairs at a Berlin U-Bahn station.
According to Berlin tabloid B.Z.
, police had not been able to apprehend the suspect because he had gone to his home country of Bulgaria. But prosecutor Martin Steltner told DPA of this report that: “We will investigate.”
reported that police would neither confirm nor deny the report to their journalists.
The assault had taken place in October at the Hermannstrasse U-Bahn station, but police last week released CCTV footage
vividly depicting how the man – seemingly unprovoked – had kicked the woman in the back, causing her to fall face-first to the platform below. He and several acquaintances then walked away while others on the platform came to the woman’s aid.
The clip was shared across social media and even gained attention in international media.
Two private citizens in Berlin had offered thousands of euros
in reward money to whoever could identify the attacker, who left the woman with a broken arm.
According to Tagesspiegel, all four men captured in the video were related to one another and came from Bulgaria. Police this week had found and questioned one of the acquaintances seen in the video, but he was later released because there was not enough evidence of a crime on his part.
Tagesspiegel further cited security sources who said it could not be ruled out that releasing the video may have contributed to the main suspect’s decision to leave Germany.
But Steltner told the newspaper that there was still hope that officials would be able to arrest the perpetrator.
A similar attack was reported in Munich days after the video was released. There, a woman reported being kicked woman down an escalator in an U-Bahn station on Saturday and having her purse snatched by three men. Police are still searching for the culprits.