Last week, Germany saw a shooter attack two locations in Hanau, killing eight and wounding five before being shot and killed by police. As night follows day, that resulted in calls for more gun control in a country with already strict laws governing civilian firearm ownership.
Today, an unidentified man used a different weapon, a silver Mercedes wagon, to “intentionally” drive into a carnival crowd in central German town of Volkmarsen. It’s still early and his motives aren’t yet known, but we await the calls from the usual suspects for stricter automobile control laws across the European Union.
From the Associated Press:
German police say a man who drove into a crowd of people watching a Carnival procession did so “intentionally.”
Police spokesman Henning Hinn said “there were several dozen injured, among them some seriously and sadly also children.”
Some of the injuries were life-threatening, he said.
Hinn said police couldn’t immediately provide further details about the man’s motivations.
THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. AP’s earlier story follows below.
A car slammed into a crowd at a Carnival procession in a German town on Monday, injuring several people, police said. The driver was arrested, but a cause for the crash wasn’t given.
Police told the dpa news agency that no deaths have been reported in the crash in Volkmarsen, about 280 kilometers (175 miles) southwest of Berlin. Police said they couldn’t provide a specific number of injuries and they refused to release any details on the driver.
Police told dpa it wasn’t yet clear whether the driver had suffered some sort of a medical issue, if there was a mechanical problem with the car or whether the vehicle was intentionally driven into the crowd.
Local media reported at least a dozen injuries, including children, but police couldn’t immediately confirm the information.
Emergency responders set up a makeshift clinic in a town pharmacy to treat casualties with minor injuries, the regional Frankfurter Rundschau newspaper reported. Witnesses said the car drove around a barrier blocking off traffic from the parade, but that it wasn’t yet clear whether the driver intentionally headed toward the crowd, according to the paper.
Video from the scene showed a silver Mercedes station wagon with local license plates and its hazard lights blinking on a sidewalk, while emergency crews walked by. The crash occurred on the south side of the town, outside a supermarket.
The crash came amid the height of Germany’s celebration of Carnival, with the biggest parades in Cologne, Duesseldorf and Mainz.
Volkmarsen, which has a population of 7,000, is east of Duesseldorf, near Kassel.
Police in Western Hesse state tweeted that all other Carnival parades in the state Monday were ended after the crash as a precaution.
Police shut down the area to allow emergency crews to deal with the crash. Police said they couldn’t immediately provide further details and urged people not to spread “unconfirmed reports.”