An 8-year-old boy was killed on Monday when a man
pushed him and his mother into the path of an oncoming train at
Frankfurt's main train station.
A suspect has been taken into custody and the case is being investigated as a homicide, police said. Witnesses said a man pushed the boy and his mother off platform 7, according to police. The 40-year-old woman was able to save herself and avoid the oncoming high-speed regional train. Her son suffered fatal injuries.
"The child was run over by the train ... and died on the tracks," police spokesman Thomas Hollerbach said. "The 40-year-old mother managed to roll to the side and save herself." The suspect also tried to push another person, according to police, but that person was able to avoid falling onto the tracks. He initially fled the scene but was apprehended outside the station with the help of passers-by.
A "massive police operation" ensued at the train station, the police spokeswoman said. Several tracks were closed for several hours, leading to delays and cancellations. Police are pursuing a murder investigation and will be examining video footage of the incident.
The suspect is 40 and from Eritrea, according to initial investigations.
The suspect and the victims did not know each other, the police said. The mother was taken to hospital and received emergency medical care. She will be questioned as soon as possible, a police spokesman said. Volker Bouffier, the president of the state of Hesse, said he felt shaken by the incident.
"It is bewildering that mother and child were pushed in front of a train. The explanation of the heinous act is now in the hands of the competent authorities," he said. Interior Minister Horst Seehofer announced that he would interrupt his holiday to chair a crisis meeting of the security authorities.
Less than two weeks ago, a 34-year-old mother was shoved off the platform and onto the tracks at a train station in Voerde, in the western state of North Rhine Westphalia. She was killed by an oncoming regional train. The 28-year-old suspect - a Serb born in Germany - is said to have silently approached the woman from behind and pushed her onto the tracks. He is currently in provisional custody on suspicion of murder and has not commented on the accusations against him.
Frankfurt station is one of the largest railway stations in Germany and is visited by almost 500,000 people every day.
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