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Murder of five children: mother is silent, lawyers argue

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14. June 2021 – 16:21 Clock

Wuppertal (dpa) – Christiane K. appears in the hall with an FFP2 mask, sits on the edge of the dock and only moves a little in the middle at the request of the presiding judge. She is wearing a black and white checked shirt. The 28-year-old is under strong suspicion of having viciously murdered five of her six children. But the little blonde woman doesn’t say a single sentence on the first day of the trial in the Wuppertal courtroom. Her three lawyers will soon take the floor for this.

Your client will not testify either on the matter or on her person, they informed the court on Monday. The woman’s expression is expressionless. She sits straight as a candle in the dock, carefully observing the presiding judge Jochen Kötter.

The children’s bodies were discovered on September 3 last year in the woman’s apartment in Solingen: Melina (1), Leonie (2), Sophie (3), Timo (6) and Luca (8). Her mother threw herself in front of a train at Düsseldorf Central Station on the same day, but survived without any visible permanent damage.

According to public prosecutor Heribert Kaune-Gebhardt, she administered “high doses” of a mixture of three drugs to her children and thus “deliberately induced a twilight state” in order to reduce their resistance. One by one, she took the little ones to the bathroom and strangled, suffocated or drowned in the bathtub. Then she wrapped each child in towels and put them in a cot. Their eldest son survived unharmed. Shortly before, his mother had sent him on a train to see his grandmother on the Lower Rhine.

Immediately after the indictment has been read out, one of the three defense attorneys shoots himself at the psychiatric expert of the case with a series of motions and doesn’t let him down. His client did not release the expert from medical confidentiality, instead he “tricked” her into partial confidentiality and thus deceived her, says lawyer Thomas Seifert. Such an exemption is also not provided for by law, countered the prosecutor.

In addition, the expert did not even inquire about relevant investigative procedures, let alone inspect the files. The criminal process should also be suspended to await these investigations. It should be about the question of whether the accused was sexually abused as a child. In a preliminary statement, the expert had not found any mental illnesses in the 28-year-old.

Christiane K. faces life imprisonment. So far, the German had protested her innocence: A masked stranger broke into her apartment, tied and gagged her and then killed her children. The investigators consider this to be a protective claim: “Of course we investigated, but we have not found anything that speaks for it,” said one of them.

Rather, there was a violent exchange of words via WhatsApp with her husband, who was already separated from her. When he made it clear to her that there was no going back for him, she wrote that he would not see his children again.

Shortly before the end of the less than two-hour trial day, there was a verbal dispute between co-plaintiff Jochen Ohliger and lawyer Seifert. Judge Kötter feels compelled to admonish the parties to be calm and prudent. Ohliger represents the biological father of four of the killed children. He moved out a year before the act. After that there were several unsuccessful attempts to save the marriage. His client is now in therapy and wants to know how this catastrophe could come about.

The act had caused horror nationwide. The district court has scheduled eleven days of hearing for the case. The process is scheduled to continue this Thursday.

© dpa-infocom, dpa: 210614-99-987528 / 6

Source: DPA

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