A former member of Jehovah’s Witnesses killed at least eight people, following huntingat a worship-related event in Hamburg, Germany, this Thursday night. Eight people were injured, four of whom are hospitalized in serious condition.
The perpetrator, as revealed by the authorities this Friday, was a 35 year old manI will have fired more than 100 timesand killed himself after the police arrived at the scene, calculating the death toll.
The suspect had a gun license and legally possessed a semi-automatic handgun. Hamburg police chief Ralph Martin Mayer said the attacker was already being investigated by authorities suspected of being ineligible to bear arms. However, the process would ultimately conclude that no rules had been broken.
The motives of the attack have already been described by the chancellor and former mayor of Hamburg Olaf Solz as a “brutal act of violence”, are still unknown. However, authorities have so far found no evidence of a link to a terrorist group.
Investigators investigate ‘motive behind crime’
According to the Hamburg police, officers arrived at the crime scene shortly after the first call for intervention, at 21:04.
A nearby special operations unit arrived at the scene at 9:09 p.m. and managed to separate the gunman from the church, Hamburg Interior Minister Andy Grote added.
When agents arrived at the scene of the shooting, a room of his Jehovah’s Witnesses, in a modern three-story building in a northern neighborhood of the city, police found people with gunshot wounds on the ground floor and heard a gunshot from an upper floor.
On that floor they found a fatally wounded man, who they believe was the shooter.
Hours after the shooting, Hamburg police spokesman Holger Wehren already believed that the attacker had acted alone, there was no indication that anyone else was on the run and that it seemed likely that the person responsible for the massacre was either in the building or among the dead .
Also, according to Vehren, the agents did not have to use their firearms.
Nearby, student Laura Bauch heard “about four shots,” she told the German news agency dpa. “There were always multiple shots during these periods, roughly at intervals of 20 seconds to a minute,” he added.
During the night, coroners were seen walking around the building. According to the police, “the investigation into the motive of the crime continues.”