Justice: Police murder process: co-defendant describes fear of death

In the trial of the fatal shots at two police officers near Kusel in the Palatinate, the co-defendant answered questions from the court about the night of the crime at the end of January for the first time.

Justice: Police murder process: co-defendant describes fear of death

In the trial of the fatal shots at two police officers near Kusel in the Palatinate, the co-defendant answered questions from the court about the night of the crime at the end of January for the first time. He described how he had "abnormal fear" for his own life after the main suspect shot the officers. "I was afraid that I would not survive the night," he said on Monday before the Kaiserslautern district court. "Anyone who shoots two people so carelessly also kills a third," he said of the main defendant (39), who was charged with two murders.

His throat was constricted, his heart was racing. "It took a long time before he was able to think clearly again. "I didn't know how to react," said the 33-year-old, who is accused of attempting to distribute punishment. He was also visibly nervous when he was admitted on Monday. He saw , how the policewoman fell to the ground on her stomach and also saw the dead policeman. "It was disgusting and bad for me. The blank stare. Everything so bloated."

Then he "turned his head off" and followed the 39-year-old's instructions. "Even on the way home, I was still afraid that something would happen." The main accused is said to have murdered a policewoman (24) and her colleague (29) during a night traffic check on a county road with shots in the head to cover up poaching. The men were arrested shortly after the crime in Saarland.

The 33-year-old said he was behind the van when he did it. He saw the 39-year-old go to the driver's door to look for something. "And then there was a loud bang," he said. He did not see that the 39-year-old later shot the police officer again.

The co-defendant said that he himself had never fired a sharp weapon in his life. He also doesn't know how to reload a gun. He has known the 39-year-old since mid-2021 - and since last October they have been hunting together several times a week. It was his job to collect the game shot by the main defendant. He received ten euros per deer for a deer and 20 euros for larger animals. With a night vision device, he tracked down the animal carcasses. He never had a gun with him.

The 33-year-old testified to the police shortly after his arrest, but has so far remained silent during the trial. The answers to previously submitted questions from the presiding judge had been eagerly awaited.

In his testimony after the arrest, the co-defendant had already blamed his accomplice at the time for the deaths of the two police officers. The 39-year-old, on the other hand, only wants to have killed the police officer in self-defense; the 33-year-old was responsible for the death of the police officer, he had repeatedly testified in the process.

When the 33-year-old was admitted, the main defendant took notes. He then presented around 190 alleged lies by the co-defendant, which he claims to have identified in his previous statements. Example: The co-defendant claimed not to use knives. But he did use knives to cut up game. The aim of his statements: to shake the credibility of the 33-year-old.

An expert report on bang and gunshot noises presented by an expert from the Baden-Württemberg State Criminal Police Office did not bring any new findings on Monday. Based on the recordings of two video cameras 1.2 kilometers away from the crime scene, only the shots from the police officer's service pistol could be assigned "with a high degree of probability". For the other shot noises, an assignment to specific weapons is "rather difficult".

"Technology has its limits," summarized the presiding judge, Raphael Mall. The court also hoped that more would have been gained. There are 23 pops in total on the list.

The process will continue this Wednesday. Mall announced additional dates through December 28. However, the court hoped and assumed that not all appointments would be needed, Mall said.

He also announced that the relatives of the policewoman who was killed had withdrawn their claim for damages from the main defendant. Otherwise, the process could have dragged on, it said.

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