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25 Jan, 2022 01:52

New details revealed about German university shooting suspect

One student died and three were injured after a lone gunman opened fire at Heidelberg University
New details revealed about German university shooting suspect

A 23-year-old woman died from her injuries following a shooting attack at Heidelberg University, Mannheim Police Chief Siegfried Kollmar said at a press conference following the attack on Monday. Three more people – all of them students – were injured in the incident.

The gunman was only identified as an “18-year-old German.” The suspect was allegedly a biology student at the university, German media reported.

When the teenager, who was armed with two weapons, including a shotgun, entered the lecture hall, there were around 30 people there, Kollmar said. The suspect then took several shots before fleeing and taking his own life. Around 400 police officers arrived at the scene six minutes after being alerted, but the suspect was already dead by that time, according to the police chief.

It is unclear if the gunman shot at random or targeted anyone in particular. The attacker had no criminal record and was previously unknown to police. Preliminary reports indicate that he did not have a gun license, but managed to obtain the firearms abroad several days before the shooting. It is so far unclear how he acquired them.

While it is currently believed that there was no religious or political motive behind the attack, officers searching the suspect’s apartment in Mannheim found a WhatsApp message that reportedly read: “people must be punished.” 

The message was apparently written shortly before the attack. According to Kollmar, police are now verifying the authenticity of the text. Some German media reported that the incident might have been linked to a relationship issue.