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Police arrest suspects in murder of fireman

December 8, 2019

A group of seven young men beat to death a firefighter in front of his wife and another couple after they visited Augsburg's Christmas market. The murder has shocked the city and the wider state of Bavaria.

Image: picture-alliance/dpa/S. Puchner

Police in southern Germany on Sunday arrested suspects in the murder of a 49-year-old firefighter, whose death has shaken Bavaria.

The firefighter was with his wife and another couple when they were attacked by a group of seven young men on Friday night after leaving a Christmas market in the city of Augsburg.

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Police reported the victim was fatally struck on the head following a dispute with the group that also left the firefighter's male friend badly injured. Both women were unharmed.

Bavarian authorities said Sunday two suspects had been arrested following an investigation and a large-scale manhunt.

Police identified the prime suspect as a 17-year-old resident of Augsburg with "multiple nationalities." The second arrest was of 17-year-old born in Augsburg with a southern European nationality.

They were working to identify other members of the group using video footage from the scene.

On Sunday, more than 100 firefighters in the city gathered at the site of the crime to honor their colleague.

Echoing similar feelings across Bavaria, Interior Minister Horst Seehofer expressed anger and disbelief that the firefighter was killed.

"What has really upset me is that a peaceable citizen was killed in Augsburg, simply beaten to death," Seehofer said in a television interview on Sunday.

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cw/rc (AFP, dpa)

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