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MANY - MAY 10 : Forensic specialists of the German police secure the crime scene after a deadly knife attack on May 10, 2016 in Grafing near Munich, Germany
Image: picture-alliance/AA/L. Barth

Knife attack near Munich kills one

Matt Zuvela, dj, rs
May 10, 2016

A knife attack near Munich has left one person dead and three injured. According to authorities, the attacker suffers from mental issues and drug problems. Preliminary information has shown no link with jihadi groups.

https://p.dw.com/p/1Ikpi

Police have arrested a 27-year-old suspect who stabbed four men at a train station outside Munich, killing one.

The state interior minister of Bavaria, Joachim Herrmann, said the suspect admitted to the stabbings, which took place early Tuesday morning. According to Herrmann, the attacker suffers from mental health and drug problems.

One man, 56, died of his injuries. Three other victims, including two cyclists, are aged 43, 55 and 58. One of the men remains in critical condition.

In a press conference, a police spokesperson said the German national most likely acted alone.

The preliminary probe showed "no evidence of accomplices, or of the suspect being part of an Islamist network," said Petra Sandles, deputy chief of the Bavarian police.

This was confirmed by her colleague Lothar Köhler, who said there was no evidence "in any form" that the attack was linked with jihadis.

However, Köhler cautioned this claim still needed to be verified. The suspect has apparently confessed to screaming "Allahu Akbar," Arabic for "God is great," while attacking.

In a statement to reporters, a press spokesperson from the Bavarian state police described how the attack on Tuesday unfolded.

According to Karl-Heinz Segerer, the 27-year-old German suspect stabbed the first victim in a waiting train at the Grafing S-Bahn train station at around 4:50 a.m. Grafing is a town in the suburbs east of Munich.

The suspect, who was barefoot, then exited the train and stabbed a second person on the train platform. The attacker left the station and stabbed a further two men who were cycling by.

Police arrived soon after and arrested the man, who offered no resistance. Bloody prints from his bare feet on the train platform could be seen in TV images of the scene as police carried out their investigation.

Map of Munich and Grafing in Germany

Turned out from hotel

Segerer said the knife used was a 10-centimeter (3.9-inch) blade, and added that the suspect was not registered as a resident of Bavaria.

According to Lothar Köhler from the Bavarian police, the suspect had attempted to spend the night in a Munich hotel but could not afford his stay. He is believed to have chosen Grafing at random.

At the Tuesday press conference, officials said it was difficult to obtain coherent information from the suspect, but said they discovered that he had been receiving unemployment benefits for the past two years.

Police barrier is pictured at the train station after an attack in Grafing, southeast of Munich, Germany
Two of the stabbing victims were cyclistsImage: Reuters/M. Rehle

Police said the suspect lived near the central city of Giessen, in the state of Hesse, and had begun searching his apartment on Tuesday night.

Authorities have yet to decide whether the attacker will be placed in police custody or sent to psychiatric treatment, but they confirmed that he will appear before a judge on Wednesday.

Prosecutors have accused the suspect of murder, as well as three counts of attempted murder.

'Deeply shaken'

Earlier, German Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere called the attack "despicable and cowardly," adding that "the motive for this crime has still not been conclusively explained."

Grafing Mayor Angelika Obermayr said in a TV interview that the stabbing attack in her "absolutely peaceful small town" had left residents "deeply" shaken.

"Something like this is completely new and shocks the people here very deeply," she said.