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Middle Eastern man known to police: Knife attacker stole cans of beer – now investigators examine police shots

The alleged shoplifter who was shot after a knife attack on a police officer Tuesday afternoon near the train station in Gummersbach is now apparently out of danger. As FOCUS online learned from police sources, the 30-year-old Middle Eastern man is still being artificially ventilated. His hospital room is also being guarded.

According to further information, the man living in Gummersbach has repeatedly come to the attention of the criminal justice system. He has already been registered for property and assault offenses. Violations of drug laws are also on the list, as well as resistance to law enforcement officers. In October, the man was fined by the Gummersbach District Court for assaulting police officers. Another case is still ongoing. The other offenses have not yet come before the court.

Middle Eastern man stole beer from a supermarket

According to the Cologne Public Prosecutor’s Office, the 30-year-old suspect allegedly stole several cans of beer from a supermarket in the Gummersbach city center on Tuesday afternoon. When an employee noticed the theft and confronted the Middle Eastern man, he unexpectedly struck the saleswoman in the face.

Four alerted police officers then spotted the suspect near the train station. “After a preliminary assessment of the situation, the suspect then reportedly threatened the four police officers with a knife and inflicted a cut to one of their faces,” reported Senior Public Prosecutor Ulrich Bremer to FOCUS online. He had pulled the knife over the police officer’s neck and nose. The victim was treated on an outpatient basis.

Gummersbach: “Who, when, how often, and where shots were fired is the subject of intensive investigations”

After the knife attack, the suspect initially fled but then suddenly turned around and ran towards the officers. “Several officers then fired shots. Who, when, how often, and where shots were fired is the subject of intensive investigations,” the police spokesperson further stated. The 30-year-old was hit by at least three projectiles, and an examination will determine if there were more hits.

At present, Bremer described his condition as stable. “A 43-year-old passerby was injured by a shot in the buttocks area. He is still receiving inpatient treatment. In addition, a 74-year-old Gummersbacher suffered a graze wound to the upper body. He was treated on an outpatient basis.”

The attacker is being investigated for robbery, resisting law enforcement officers, and grievous bodily harm.

Cologne police evaluate witness statements and videos

“For reasons of neutrality, the police in Cologne are investigating the question of whether the police officers involved have committed a crime,” it continues. The main question is “whether the legal conditions for assuming self-defense were met.” For this purpose, the Cologne police are taking witness statements and also evaluating the trace evidence and video recordings apparently made by passersby. The overall investigations are ongoing,” the conclusion reads.

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