Berlin crash driver who killed someone ‘has serious problems’, sister says
‘He’s in serious trouble’: Berlin’s furious driver’s ‘shocked’ sister speaks after a German-Armenian crashed his car into the classroom during a year-end trip, killing their teacher, as politicians say he is ‘severely mentally retarded’
- Gor H, 29, deliberately drove his car into pedestrians in Berlin on Wednesday and hit the classroom during the year-end trip
- Teacher, 51, killed and 14 others – including teenage students and second teacher – were injured, six seriously
- Driver’s sister, student nurse who lived with German-Armenian passport holder, said he has ‘serious problems’
- Politicians now describe attack as ‘severely mentally disabled’ rampage as police use an interpreter to try to understand his ‘confused statements’
A German-Armenian man who drove his car into a group of schoolchildren during a school holiday in Berlin on Wednesday “is in serious trouble,” his “shocked” sister said while being questioned by police today.
Gor H, 29, purposely rammed into his car in the 10th grade classroom in front of the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gedächtniskirche around 10:30 a.m. – killing a 51-year-old teacher, seriously injuring a second and 14 students between the ages of 16 years old were injured and 17, including six now in critical condition.
Franziska Giffey, the mayor of Berlin, said on Thursday morning that officers were still questioning Gor to determine a motive, but said an image has emerged of a “rampage” carried out by a “severely mentally retarded person.”
Armed police who raided Gor’s apartment on Wednesday afternoon, which is less than a mile from the crime scene, found no explosives or extremist material. A “letter of confession” reportedly found in his vehicle was found not to exist, although officers did find literature “relating to Turkey.”
Gor – who was filmed being arrested shouting “please help” at passers-by – is in talks with police, German media reported, but is making “confused statements” that officers are trying to decipher with the help of an interpreter.
Speaking to Bild newspaper outside the apartment they shared with their mental health mother, Gor’s “shocked” sister – whose car he used for the attack – said only that “he is in serious trouble.”
Neighbors, affectionately calling the fat Gor “little round man,” told the newspaper that he always greeted them warmly and described him as a “loving and kind person.”
This is when police in Germany arrested a 29-year-old German-Armenian man who had twice crashed his car into a crowd of pedestrians, killing at least one and injuring a dozen
The estimated route the driver took is outlined in red before crashing and being tackled by passersby
Berlin’s top security official, Iris Spranger, said the murdered woman was a teacher on a trip to the German capital with students from a secondary school in the central German state of Hesse.
Six people suffered life-threatening injuries and another three were seriously injured, firefighters spokesman Adrian Wentzel said. Police said 14 students from Hesse were among those who suffered injuries of varying severity, but did not give a total number.
American-British actor John Barrowman, who was at a nearby store at the time of the crash, described the scene as “carnage.”
The driver was apparently detained by passers-by and then quickly arrested by a police officer near the scene, Cablitz said. Investigators were working to determine whether the man deliberately drove into the pedestrian or whether it was an accident, possibly caused by a medical emergency.
According to the police, the driver was a 29-year-old German-Armenian living in Berlin.
Spranger said posters were found in the man’s car “expressing his views on Turkey”.
In a later interview with regional public broadcaster RBB, Spranger said German domestic intelligence had no direct information about the man and authorities are still checking whether he was known to the police.
She said the driver was in a hospital, “because of course we have to make it clear right away if he’s sick, if he’s taken drugs and so on.”
“We can’t rule out anything at this point…but there’s no claim to responsibility,” Spranger said.
Berlin mayor Franziska Giffey said she was “deeply shocked” by the incident, but warned them against drawing premature conclusions.
“Before speculating, I think it’s important at this stage to let the police and fire departments really do their investigation,” the mayor said. ‘We want the greatest possible transparency, but we also want reliable information.’
Giffey said the crash brought back “terrible memories” of a truck attack more than five years ago on the nearby Breitscheidplatz square. An Islamic extremist drove into a Christmas market in 2016, killing 13.
In a 2019 incident in central Berlin, an SUV rammed into a group of pedestrians, killing four people. The driver had had a seizure and ended up on the sidewalk.
A memorial service was held in the evening at the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gedächtniskirche on Breitscheidplatz, next to the accident site, for the people who were killed or injured in Wednesday’s accident.