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Gun official and shooting club probed for Hamburg shooting


BERLIN — German prosecutors said Thursday they are investigating a Hamburg firearms department official and three members of a shooting club in connection with a mass shooting during a church service in a hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses last month.

A 35-year-old German man opened fire during the March 9 service, killing six people and injuring nine, including a pregnant woman who lost her unborn child, before turning the gun on himself on arrival of the font.

Hamburg prosecutors said authorities searched the homes of an official with the city’s firearms department and three members of the Hanseatic Gun Club including the attacker – identified only as Phillipp F. due to security rules. German confidentiality – had been part of.

Prosecutors said the firearms official was being investigated on suspicion of negligent homicide for failing to properly document and pass on information about the shooter’s psychological condition that he received from F’s family, via a member of the shooting club.

Because the agent had recorded the tip as “anonymous,” despite knowing its true source, the authorities only ordered an unannounced visit to F.’s home rather than seek additional information.

Prosecutors are investigating three members of the Hanseatic Gun Club examination board who are suspected of issuing a certificate dated April 28 that falsely states that F. had passed a knowledge of firearms examination, even though he had failed and was due to retake the test later in the year. . If authorities had known, they might not have issued F. a firearms license in December, prosecutors said.

F. was a former member of Jehovah’s Witnesses who left voluntarily about two years ago, according to the church.

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