After the deadly police shots from a submachine gun at a youth in Dortmund, four other officers involved in the operation are being investigated.
The shooter himself, who fired six bullets from a submachine gun, is now being investigated for suspicion of manslaughter. Officially, however, further investigations are currently being carried out against him on suspicion of bodily harm resulting in death. This emerges from a report by the Ministry of the Interior to the state parliament, which is available to the German Press Agency.
The four other officers who are now being investigated are all those who used weapons or other resources against the young person during the controversial operation.
The new investigation into assault at the agency involves a police officer who used pepper spray and two police officers who fired Tasers. Also against the head of operations for inciting physical harm. He had ordered the use of pepper spray and tasers. What is also new is that twelve officers were involved in the operation, including four in civilian clothes. So far, eleven emergency services were assumed.
The Dortmund police chief announced in the evening that disciplinary proceedings had also been initiated against all officers who were under criminal investigation. One official had been suspended from duty and four others had been transferred. The presumption of innocence continues to apply to the five officers, it said.
Pepper spray in response to attempted suicide
The police were called to the courtyard of a youth welfare facility in the north of Dortmund on August 8, where the 16-year-old held a 15 to 20 centimeter knife to his stomach. The operation initially ran as a suicide attempt. The unaccompanied minor refugee from Senegal had come to Germany in April and only days before the deployment to Dortmund and is said not to have spoken German well.
The teenager initially crouched on the ground and pointed the knife at himself. Only when he was sprayed with pepper spray did he jump up and move towards the police officers. Then the tasers were used, but had no effect.
Was there a knife attack?
The police officer fired his submachine gun six times. So far it has been said that five shots hit the youngster in the face, forearm, stomach and two times in the shoulder. According to the autopsy, he was hit four times. A bullet went through one part of the body and into another, causing two injuries. The 16-year-old later died in hospital.
As can be seen from the report to the state parliament, the officials addressed the young people from Senegal in German and Spanish. Apparently, they didn't tell him to put the knife down, the report said.
As it is further said, both Taser shots had not worked. The first one didn't hit the right target, the second one hit the teenager's limbs, among other things, and was probably painful, but didn't lead to the short-term rigidity that he had hoped for.
Body cams were not turned on
Several points of the mission had caused criticism. It was about the fact that the police officers' body cams were not switched on. A check showed that there were no recordings on them. In addition, the Federal Criminal Police Office is still evaluating the emergency call.
The deadly police operation had caused consternation. In Dortmund there were demonstrations of the left spectrum and the African community. According to the public prosecutor's office, however, there is no evidence that the young person's black skin color played a role in the operation.
NRW Interior Minister Reul: "New situation"
NRW Interior Minister Herbert Reul (CDU) sees "a new situation" after the investigations have been expanded. But that also shows that the case is being looked at carefully, said Reul on Thursday. He emphasized that all procedures are an initial suspicion.
"Thanks to this report, numerous new details have now come to light. This results in a new situation in this already dramatic case," commented the domestic policy spokeswoman for the SPD parliamentary group, Christina Kampmann. It is good that an independent authority is providing clarification.