Germany : Gunman opened fire at cinema, shot to death by police


Germany : German police special commando shot to death an armed, masked assailant Thursday about two hours after he had stormed into a movie theater in the western town of Viernheim, state Interior Minister Peter Beuth said. There was no indication that anyone else was shot. There were initial reports that 25 people had been hurt in the mayhem but the number of casualties could not be confirmed. Some German news media said that the injuries were from police tear-gas and that the assailant had carried a weapon loaded with blank cartridges.

Police shot the man dead after elite forces stormed the complex, the Mannheimer Morgen newspaper reported, citing the interior minister of Hesse state. The Darmstaedter Echo said 20 to 50 people had been wounded. But Bild daily said that according to police, about 25 people were hurt because of exposure to tear gas.

Earlier, Focus Online magazine reported that German police had arrested the man. Police were not immediately available for comment. Several media reported that the man had entered the cinema complex at around 3 pm local time (1500 GMT). The Frankfurter Allgemeine said it was unclear if there was a political or ideological motive or whether it was a robbery that went wrong.