Hostage-taking in prison: Halle assassin had object made of paper and metal

When the hostages were taken in the Burg prison near Magdeburg, the Halle assassin is said to have used an allegedly self-made object to threaten the servants.

Hostage-taking in prison: Halle assassin had object made of paper and metal

When the hostages were taken in the Burg prison near Magdeburg, the Halle assassin is said to have used an allegedly self-made object to threaten the servants.

Facility manager Ulrike Hagemann reported to the legal committee of the Saxony-Anhalt state parliament that she had seen a rolled sheet of paper that had been reinforced with a pencil. There was also a piece of metal on it, like a kind of hinge from a cupboard or a toilet seat.

Officials from the Interior Ministry and the Attorney General's Office said investigations into the matter were ongoing. It must be clarified whether it is suitable as a weapon or whether it is a dummy weapon or dummy.

One of the most dangerous criminals in Germany

The perpetrator "held the object directly in front of the officer's forehead", whom he first took hostage on Monday evening, said the head of the correctional facility (JVA). The officer knew that he was dealing with one of the most dangerous criminals in Germany, who was also very "imaginative". According to Hagemann, the young officer rightly took the situation very seriously. Anything else would have been negligent.

30-year-old Stephan Balliet had taken two servants into his power on Monday evening and wanted to force his way to freedom. He was overpowered in less than an hour.

The public prosecutor's office in Naumburg took over the investigation. This is also related to the importance of the case, said a spokesman for the authority. The hostage-taker was interrogated.

"object" held in front of the nose

The head of the maximum security prison described the processes in detail. During the so-called night lock, the prisoner took a prison official by surprise and held an "object" in front of him. The prisoner said unequivocally, "we're going out now." The officer complied with this request out of fear for his life. Additional employees were added when an alarm was triggered.

After another officer opened a gate, the prisoner entered a courtyard. The second officer was then taken hostage, said Hagemann. Other colleagues positioned themselves and overpowered the prisoner when he was inattentive for a moment.

"We are conducting intensive investigations"

The head of the facility praised the behavior of the JVA officials when the hostages were taken. In particular, one employee who was taken hostage behaved very "skillfully". He had prepared for his colleagues to overpower the prisoner when he was briefly inattentive. Everything that is trained in exercises has been implemented, said Hagemann. According to her, the officers taken hostage were young employees.

The assassin and hostage-taker had already been questioned by investigators on Tuesday. The German press agency learned this from security circles. It is not yet known whether the prisoner commented on the incident. "We are conducting intensive investigations," said a spokesman for the State Criminal Police Office (LKA).

The Halle assassin is currently being held in a specially secured cell in the JVA Burg. A relocation of the prisoner to another federal state is in the room. According to the Department of Justice, this is standard procedure after such an incident.

The assassin was sentenced to life imprisonment and subsequent preventive detention in December 2020. On October 9, 2019, Yom Kippur, the highest Jewish holiday, he tried to storm the synagogue in Halle and cause a massacre. When he was unable to get onto the premises, he murdered a 40-year-old passer-by in front of the synagogue and a 20-year-old in a nearby kebab shop. He injured other people while fleeing. The perpetrator had already built his own weapons for the attack in Halle.

Head of the facility Hagemann said that the inmates had a lot of time in prison and developed a lot of imagination about how they could convert and repurpose everyday objects. She stressed that the assassin's and hostage-taker's mail had been carefully checked. During visits, very close attention was paid to prevent the transfer of prohibited items.

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