German teen who attacked school awakes from coma
A German teenager who wounded nine students and a teacher in a terrifying ax and arson attack on his school was motivated by a "hatred for humanity" and had been planning the rampage since April, officials said.world Updated: Sep 21, 2009 22:46 IST
A German teenager who wounded nine students and a teacher in a terrifying ax and arson attack on his school was motivated by a "hatred for humanity" and had been planning the rampage since April, officials said on Monday. The new details came as the 18-year-old, who had been shot three times by police, was awakened Monday from a medically induced coma. Prosecutor Gudrun Lehnberger said the suspect was responsive but has not yet been questioned about Thursday's attack.
However, the roughly 80 pages of evidence recovered from the teenager's laptop included extensive information on his plans, much of it addressed to a female whose name was not released, said Juergen Krach, another prosecutor. Krach said investigators believe the addressee may be fictional, and the material was apparently not sent to anyone.
The teenager, who has not been named, wrote that his "goal was to kill as many students and teachers as possible and burn down the school," Lehnberger told reporters at a news conference. "As a motive, he named his hatred for humanity and, above all, school," she said.
The assailant wrote that he was treated unfairly in and out of school and feared that he wouldn't meet the requirements for graduation Lehnberger said. She added that he had expressed a wish to die himself in the attack, "he didn't want to live any more." Krach said the student wrote that his parents were not responsible for his planned actions, which he described in documents dating back to April, and also lamented that he wanted but apparently did not have a steady girlfriend.
Already in April, he used the word "Amok," or rampage, Krach said. In May, he turned his attention to weapons. In June, he chose the day for the attack and his clothing, and settled on the school's third story.
"What was decisive for him was there was a particularly large number of classrooms there," Krach said.
The assailant chose a T-shirt for the day with the words "Made in School" printed on it.
The documents, which had been deleted, but were retrieved by computer specialists, showed that he intended to draw students out of classrooms with burning objects and then attack them with handheld weapons such as an ax, officials said.
Last Thursday, he did just that. He climbed to the third story of the school in Ansbach, Bavaria, shortly after classes started, tossed Molotov cocktails into a classroom and then attacked students with an ax and knives as they fled.
Over 700 students fled the school in southern Germany, some leaving by an emergency staircase.
Police shot the assailant three times in the upper body, officials said on Monday, correcting a previous statement that he was shot five times.
Two girls who suffered the most serious injuries were both out of critical condition, officials said. One girl suffered a blow to the head with an ax and the other had serious burns.
The high school reopened for classes on Monday after holding counseling sessions on Friday.
"We slowly want to return to normal," principal Franz Stark said.
The Ansbach attack was the second attack on a school in Germany this year, and took place just three days into Bavaria's new school year.
In March, 17-year-old Tim Kretschmer fatally shot 12 people at his former school in the southwestern town of Winnenden. He fled the building and killed three more people before turning the gun on himself.
That was the nation's second-worst school shooting. A 2002 shooting spree in Erfurt left 17 dead, including the gunman. Krach, the state prosecutor, said the teenager who carried out the Ansbach attack mentioned Erfurt and may have been inspired by that spree.
After Kretschmer's attack in Winnenden, Germany moved to tighten checks on gun owners.