Hesse: manslaughter trial against ex-policeman: acquittal demanded

Gießen (dpa/lhe) - In the manslaughter trial against a former police officer, the public prosecutor and the defense have pleaded for acquittal.

Hesse: manslaughter trial against ex-policeman: acquittal demanded

Gießen (dpa/lhe) - In the manslaughter trial against a former police officer, the public prosecutor and the defense have pleaded for acquittal. Both justified their claim with the fact that the accused was in a self-defense situation. The 71-year-old retired detective is said to have killed a 55-year-old with a knife during a dispute about a drone flight in Wettenberg in central Hesse.

The situation in August 2020 was so acute and self-defense that the stab was justified, the prosecutor said on Monday before the Gießen district court. The defense took a similar view, but the co-prosecutor took a different view: According to the lawyer representing the victim's family, the defendant acted unlawfully. Therefore, he should be sentenced for manslaughter.

The prosecutor spoke of a "tragedy" and "misunderstanding". A marginal cause led to an "explosion of violence" within a very short time. He referred to questions that remained unanswered and to inconsistencies in the statements of the 71-year-old and witnesses. However, the public prosecutor sees “no other option than to assume self-defence”. He could understand if the victim's family and friends had a hard time living with it.

According to the indictment, the 71-year-old German had used a drone to film Gleiberg Castle. He initially got into an argument with a then 62-year-old who feared that the aircraft would disturb horses. The verbal argument turned into a physical one. When the victim, a companion of the 62-year-old, was added, the accused injured him with a knife.

The 71-year-old had referred to self-defense at the beginning of the process. He feared for his life. He also said the victim ran into the knife. This statement was not easy for the family of the deceased, said the co-plaintiff. It is an "expression of lack of empathy". The court wants to deliver the verdict next Wednesday (August 24).

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