Eritrean Migrant Held on Murder Charge Over Railway Death of Child Has ‘Psychiatric Problems’ — (Breitbart)

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Breitbart

by Breitbart London

BERLIN (AP) – An Eritrean man suspected of fatally pushing an 8-year-old boy in front of a train at Frankfurt’s main station had undergone psychiatric treatment recently and was being sought by Swiss police after threatening a neighbor, authorities said Tuesday.

The 40-year-old, who has lived in Switzerland for over a decade and has three small children, hasn’t yet given any explanation for a possible motive for the killing that has horrified Germany, said Nadja Niesen, a spokeswoman for prosecutors in Frankfurt.

The boy’s mother and then the 8-year-old were pushed onto the tracks as a high-speed ICE train was pulling into the Frankfurt station, one of Germany’s busiest, on Monday morning. The 40-year-old mother managed to get out of the train’s path but the boy was run over and killed.

The suspect then apparently tried unsuccessfully to push a third person, a 78-year-old woman, onto the track before fleeing. She fell and suffered a shoulder injury.

The man, whose name has not been released, was chased by passers-by, including an off-duty police officer, and arrested near the station.

A judge ordered him held in custody pending possible charges of murder and attempted murder.

Niesen said the nature of the crime raises the possibility of mental illness and a psychiatric assessment will be conducted. Swiss authorities later told reporters the man had undergone psychiatric treatment this year.

The suspect, who lived in the Zurich region, told German investigators that he took a train from the Swiss city of Basel to Frankfurt a few days ago.

He arrived in Switzerland in 2006 and applied for asylum, which he obtained in 2008, said Dieter Romann, the head of Germany’s federal police. He had a long-term residence permit in Switzerland and worked there, and was considered well-integrated.

However, on July 25, he is alleged to have threatened a woman who lived next door with a knife and locked her in her apartment before fleeing, Romann said. Swiss authorities were seeking him, but he was not in German or other European databases, he added.

Zurich regional police chief Werner Schmid said officers called to the scene last week also found the man’s wife and three small children locked inside their apartment. He told reporters in Zurich “the outbreak of violence was a surprise to his wife and to his neighbor.”

Politicians from the far-right Alternative for Germany party seized on the case to assail the German government’s immigration policies. Alternative for Germany has long attacked Chancellor Angela Merkel’s welcoming approach to an influx of refugees and other migrants in 2015.

Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said “we neither exploit nor play down crime by foreigners.”

Seehofer, speaking after he interrupted his vacation to meet with German security chiefs, said his ministry, the transport ministry and the German railway will discuss what can be done to improve security at German train stations.

 

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Man accused of pushing boy in front of Frankfurt train had ‘psychological problems’ — (The Irish Times)

German authorities say the Eritrean man accused of pushing a mother and her eight-year-old son before an oncoming train in Frankfurt on Monday, killing the boy, was a “model” refugee residing in Switzerland.

But Zurich police said the man, who had no convictions for violent behaviour, had suffered psychological problems that had kept him off work since January.

Just before 10am on Monday the man, who had been lurking behind a pillar, pushed a 40-year-old woman and then her son onto the tracks at Frankfurt central station. The woman was able to roll out of the path of an oncoming train while the boy was killed instantly. A 78-year-old woman was also shoved by the man, but she fell before reaching the edge of the platform.

The chief suspect ran from the train station, was chased by an off-duty policeman, arrested and brought before a remand judge on Tuesday.

Police said on Tuesday the suspect has said nothing about the case so far and has no obvious connection to the victims. Neither have they any idea to date of a motive. Alcohol and drug tests produced negative results and he is now undergoing a psychological evaluation.

The mother of the dead boy suffered a nervous breakdown and has been hospitalised.

A day after the death on platform seven, shocked passengers gathered before a sea of flowers, candles, soft toys and pictures.

Elke Schneiderbanger was travelling on the train from Düsseldorf on Monday morning that killed the young boy.

“I heard the conductor shouting, ‘Oh God, he’s pushed him onto the train’,” she said. “People started to scream, collapsed on the platform and we knew immediately that something bad had happened.”

Public safety

Last week a 34-year-old mother was killed in North Rhine-Westphalia when a German-born man with Serbian roots pushed her into the path of an oncoming train. The second such death in a week has sparked soul-searching in Germany about public safety, particularly in train stations.

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Man suspected of pushing a boy onto train tracks in Frankfurt has ‘schizophrenia’ — (D.W.)

German authorities transferred the suspect in the widely publicized Frankfurt murder to a psychiatric hospital after discovering he was mentally ill, prosecutors said on Thursday.

Police had arrested the man on suspicion of pushing an 8-year-old child in front of a moving train last month. He also allegedly pushed the boy’s mother onto the track and tried to push another woman off the platform at Frankfurt’s central railway station, but the adults both survived the attack.

On Thursday, authorities said the suspect was suffering from “an illness on the schizophrenia spectrum.” The 40-year-old is most likely a paranoid schizophrenic, they added.

The case sparked an embittered debate on migration in Germany, as the suspect is an Eritrean-born Swiss resident.

‘Danger to the public’

Swiss police said the man trapped his wife and three young children in their Zurich apartment before leaving the country. He had also threatened one of his neighbors with a knife and locked the woman up as well.

His symptoms were acute at the time of the Frankfurt attack, German authorities said on Thursday. They assume the suspect had “at least substantially reduced capabilities of understanding and self-control.”

They also described the man as a “danger to the public” and said it was likely he would attempt further illegal acts if released. The Eritrean still faces a charge of murder and two accounts of attempted murder in Germany.

The man had been undergoing a psychiatric treatment in Switzerland. However, despite his acts of violence, German police said that he had not been listed as wanted in international databases and was able to travel freely.