Horrible crime in eastern Mecklenburg: A six-year-old boy was stabbed to death in Pragsdorf near Neubrandenburg. This was the result of the forensic medical examination, as a police spokeswoman said. The body had several injuries that were caused by a - as yet unknown - piercing tool.
"The police are investigating manslaughter and are pursuing several investigative approaches," said the spokesman for the Neubrandenburg public prosecutor's office, Tim Wischmann, to the German Press Agency. “Ostseewelle Hit-Radio Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania” had previously reported on this. A suspect has not yet been identified. There was no new status until the evening. “The investigation is ongoing,” said a police spokeswoman when asked.
The boy was found lying in the bushes near a football field by firefighters on Thursday evening with “massive injuries to his upper body,” the police said. Attempts at resuscitation were unsuccessful.
He didn't come home from playing
The parents reported the six-year-old missing on Thursday because he did not come home from playing in the afternoon as agreed. The police, fire department and residents then searched for the child. Search dogs and a police helicopter were also used.
The mayor of the town of 580, Ralf Opitz, was among the searchers. "I also took part in the search - until my comrades made the terrible discovery," said the 54-year-old.
Many traces at the site
Public prosecutor Wischmann did not yet want to decide whether the place of discovery was also the crime scene. However, residents reported that they heard loud voices at the football field on Thursday, which could possibly have come from an argument. According to Wischmann, the police were able to secure many clues at the site.
The area was still largely cordoned off with red and white tape on Friday. Police and helpers were looking for a murder weapon and other evidence. A metal detector was also used near the lake. Divers also arrived - but so far without success, it was said. In the afternoon, search chains of 25 officers each were formed. They systematically swept the area with long iron rods, slowly moving away from the lake.
Lots of press on site
There was a lot of movement in the village on Friday. A number of reporters attempted to interview residents - which some found strange. But the residents themselves were also out and about: they were asked by the police to a fire station and community center, where they were questioned about the events. When residents met each other afterwards, they also exchanged ideas.
“The level of sympathy and the willingness to make statements is very high - this now needs to be written down and compared,” said a police spokeswoman. If no suspect is found, the investigation will continue over the weekend. Nothing can be said about the motive yet.
Fundraiser for the family
The community of Pragsdorf expressed its sadness after the child's death on the Facebook internet platform. “It was with sadness and dismay that we learned this morning of the terrible violent crime and J.’s death. Of course, our thoughts at the moment are primarily with the family and relatives,” it said. At the same time, people asked that any useful information be reported to the police immediately.
The community's Facebook page also highlighted a fundraiser for the dead child's family. Within a few hours, around 20,000 euros had already been collected.
Evening devotions in church
In the evening (6 p.m.) there will also be a prayer service in the church in Pragsdorf. "In this difficult hour, let us say goodbye to a person who had to go far too soon. The family should know that they are not alone with their pain at this time," it said on the website.
According to Mayor Ralf Opitz, the boy only started school in August. The Schwerin Ministry of Education announced that psychologists should support classmates and teaching staff. A place of mourning has also been set up in the school.
Speechless education minister
"While the death leaves us extremely affected and speechless, it is our task and duty to now support families and friends, classmates and teachers in dealing with the unbelievable situation," said Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania's Education Minister Simone Oldenburg (Left). quoted. "You have my deepest sympathy."
From Monday, performance assessments will be waived at the affected school for an entire week. School psychologists are on site. A letter offering support was sent to parents. Those affected should also receive psychological support if they wish.