Policeman in front of the gas station in Idar-Oberstein: Killed because rules were enforced
Photo: Christian Schulz / dpa
According to initial investigations, a 20-year-old student who worked at a gas station in Idar-Oberstein paid for his efforts to comply with the corona rules with his life.
After an argument about wearing a corona mask, a 49-year-old shot the young cashier.
The man was annoyed because the employee did not want to sell him beer because he did not wear mouth and nose protection, said Chief Public Prosecutor Kai Fuhrmann about the act in Rhineland-Palatinate.
An arrest warrant for murder had been issued against the alleged perpetrator from the Birkenfeld district at the Bad Kreuznach district court.
He confessed to having killed the cashier with a targeted shot in the head, said Fuhrmann.
Suspected shooter said the pandemic had weighed on him
According to the investigations so far, the man had entered the sales room of the gas station without a mask on Saturday evening and placed two six-packs of beer on the counter at the cash register.
The cashier pointed out the mask requirement to the man - whereupon the man left the room and threateningly raised his hand.
A good hour later he appeared again at the gas station - this time he wore a mouth and nose cover, took another six-pack of beer, and went to the cash register.
"There he removed the mouth and nose cover," said Chief Public Prosecutor Fuhrmann.
The cashier had again advised the man to comply with the mask requirement: Thereupon the perpetrator drew a revolver and shot the cashier.
As for the motive, the alleged murderer stated that the corona pandemic situation was a heavy burden on him.
Fuhrmann said he felt pushed into a corner and "saw no other way out" than to set a signal.
The victim seemed to him "responsible for the overall situation, since it had enforced the rules."
The man was arrested on Sunday morning on the premises of the police in Idar-Oberstein.
"We assume that he wanted to surrender," said Trier's police chief Friedel Durben.
In the meantime, according to a report, the investigators had searched for him with recordings from the surveillance cameras and warned against taking hitchhikers with them.
"This is definitely a special case," said Police Commissioner Durben.
"Neither in the Trier police headquarters nor in the state of Rhineland-Palatinate have we had such an act that suggests a connection to Corona."
apr / dpa