Teenager who killed 9 including children in Munich mall may have acted alone – Police
An 18-year-old German-Iranian man opened fire in a crowded Munich shopping mall and a nearby McDonald’s killing nine people and wounding 16 others before killing himself, the chief of police in the Bavarian capital said on Saturday.
Police gave a “cautious all clear” early on Saturday morning, more than seven hours after the attack began and brought much of the city to a standstill as all public transit systems were shut down amid a massive manhunt. They said a body found near the scene was that of the shooter and he appeared to have acted alone.
Munich police chief Hubertus Andrae told a news conference the suspect was a dual citizen from Munich and his motive was still “fully unclear.”
Mr Andrae said the suspect’s body was found about 2 1/2 hours after the attack and was determined to be the shooter based on witness statements and closed circuit television footage of the attack. The shooter was not previously known to police and there was no evidence of any links to terrorist organisations, Mr Andrae said.
Witnesses had reported seeing three men with firearms near the Olympia Einkaufszentrum mall, but the police chief said two other people who fled the area quickly were investigated but had “nothing to do with the incident.”
Mr Andrae said the nine fatalities included young people and children were among the 16 wounded, three of whom were in critical condition.
People run from scene of shooting in Munich Play! 00:32
After gunfire broke out at the mall, one of Munich’s largest, the city sent a smartphone alert declaring an “emergency situation” and telling people to stay indoors, while all rail, subway and trolley service was halted in the city.
It was the third major act of violence against civilians in Western Europe in eight days. The previous attacks, in the French resort city of Nice and on a train in Bavaria near the city of Wuerzburg, were claimed by the Islamic State group.
While police initially called the mall shooting an act of terrorism, they said they had “no indication” it involved Islamic extremism and at least one witness said he heard a shooter shout an anti-foreigner slur.
“The question of terrorism or a rampage is tied to motive, and we don’t know the motive,” Mr Andrae said. “We can’t question the suspect so this is all a little more difficult.”
Footage appears to show shooter open fire on people outside shopping mall in Munich Play! 00:25
Mr Andrae said inquiries suggested the suspect had lived in the city for more than two years and is not thought to have been known to law enforcement agencies.
“As to the background or motive of the offence it’s totally unclear. The investigations will be running on all cylinders through the night,” Mr Andrae said.
Germany has been on high alert after a teenage asylum seeker attacked people with an axe on a train on Monday, injuring five. – Telegraph