Status: 29.11.2023, 16:55 PM
Baden-Württemberg's Minister of Justice, Marion Gentges, speaks in the state parliament. © Bernd Weißbrod/dpa/Archivbild
For almost a month now, a murderer who escaped from the Bruchsal prison has disappeared from the face of the earth. The manhunt for him is in full swing - as is the search for answers as to how exactly this could have happened.
Stuttgart/Bruchsal - Just over a month after the escape of a convicted murderer during a guarded excursion, Justice Minister Marion Gentges has given further details about the man's escape. According to Gentges, there had already been indications of possible escape plans in 2021. As the CDU politician said on Wednesday in the state parliament in Stuttgart, a fellow inmate in the prison in Bruchsal had reported in October 2021 that the murderer, who has now escaped, had told him that it was probably easiest to escape during an execution. "It would be best if there was a female member of staff as an escort, because she could be more easily overpowered if necessary," Gentges said. This was reported to her by the Bruchsal prison.
"However, the prison did not classify these statements of the fellow prisoner as credible," Gentges said. Nevertheless, the security precautions were temporarily strengthened on further excursions. For this reason, four executions were carried out with three instead of the usual two companions. After there were no abnormalities, further excursions were again accompanied by two officials.
The German-Kazakh had escaped as a prisoner of the Bruchsal prison on 30 October during a guarded excursion to a quarry pond in Germersheim, Rhineland-Palatinate. It was already his eighth execution accompanied by his wife and children. In 2012, he was sentenced to life imprisonment by the Karlsruhe Regional Court for strangling a 44-year-old man.
The fugitive is still being sought throughout Europe. According to Gentges, the State Office of Criminal Investigation is currently following up on around 80 leads.
From Gentges' point of view, the prisoner's guards were not close enough to the man. The attendants are obliged to guard him constantly and directly, Gentges said. Nevertheless, the officers could not catch him as he ran away. "For me personally, this leads to the conclusion that the two members of staff were not close enough to the prisoner to be able to reach him," Gentges said. This is currently the subject of disciplinary investigations, which have not yet been concluded.
The prisoner had cracked his ankle bracelet with the help of a tool during his escape. The Minister of Justice therefore now wants to check how safe the ankle shackles used by the country are. She had asked to have it examined "how this can perhaps be equipped differently, whether there are possibly other technical possibilities to achieve even more security here," said Gentges.
In addition, Gentges wants to examine whether the statements of prisoners will have to be structured differently in the future. It would have to be checked whether in the future only one place should be visited per excursion. So far, according to the Ministry of Justice, the excursions have also been coordinated in advance with the families of the prisoners. This, too, must be questioned, said Gentges. Dpa