In Berlin on Wednesday morning, not far from Breitscheidplatz, a 29-year-old drove his car into a group of people and then into the window of a perfumery. A woman died and numerous people were injured. The background is still unclear.
According to a fire department spokesman at noon, five people are in mortal danger and three others were seriously injured. There is also an unknown number of minor injuries. The driver is said to be among the injured. According to Tagesspiegel information, students in a school class from Hesse are also among the injured. The dead woman is therefore her 51-year-old teacher.
According to a police spokesman, the driver drove into a group of people on the sidewalk at 10.30 a.m. near Rankestraße, where Kurfürstendamm merges into Tauentzienstraße, then back onto the road on Tauentzienstraße and then again onto the sidewalk at Marburger Straße and into a shop window, where he then came to a halt.
Pictures from the scene of the accident show the Renault Clio in the destroyed window of a Douglas branch opposite the Europa Center.
According to the police, the driver was arrested. He will be questioned and it will be checked whether it is a deliberate act or a traffic accident or whether a medical emergency is also possible. At first he was held by passers-by. According to police information, he is 29 years old, German-Armenian and lives in Berlin.
According to Tagesspiegel information, the man was previously treated by the federal police at Zoo station at an unknown time. Nothing was initially known about the reason for this. Earlier information, according to which he should be 60 years old, was not confirmed and turned out to be a transmission error.
The fire brigade and police are on site with a larger contingent, the police moved in with 130 forces. A rescue helicopter landed on the median of Tauentzienstraße. Heavily armed police officers were standing on nearby Breitscheidplatz. The emergency psychosocial care of the fire brigade looked after numerous victims in the Memorial Church, including those with minor injuries.
The police called on witnesses to submit information and media files about the events in order to support the investigation. They can be sent to the information portal of the Berlin police using this link.
British-American actor John Barrowman witnessed what happened. He was in a shop at the time of the incident. “It’s really pretty bad,” he said in a video he shared on Twitter this morning. A body is lying on the street, many people are injured and are limping.
According to Barrowman, the car came from the west over Kurfürstendamm and entered the sidewalk at the Memorial Church, back onto the street where it struck a pedestrian, and then back onto the sidewalk at the junction with Tauentzienstrasse. There he drove into passers-by, past a café and crashed into the Douglas branch.
Berlin’s Governing Mayor Franziska Giffey (SPD) was “deeply affected by this terrible event”. She thanked the emergency services for their work on site and expressed her condolences to the victims and their families. Giffey avoided any statement about the background of the incident and explained: “It’s about clarifying what happened and what happened.”
[Security on site – always a topic in the district newsletters from the Tagesspiegel, order free of charge at leute.tagesspiegel.de]
Interior Senator Iris Spranger (SPD) said on Twitter on Wednesday: “I am shocked by the incident in Charlottenburg. I am in the situation center and keep myself informed. My thoughts and my deepest sympathy are with all those affected.”