Nfter the attack in a gym in downtown Duisburg, at least one suspect is on the run, according to the police. “The search measures are in full swing,” said a spokeswoman for the responsible Essen police. At least three people were critically injured in the attack. The police wrote on Twitter: “Three of the victims are life-threatening, one victim is seriously injured.” All four victims are German citizens.
An arrest has not yet been made, said a spokesman for the Essen police of the German Press Agency. A “stabbing or cutting weapon” was said to have been used. The injured were taken to a hospital. Investigations into the background were ongoing.
The police wrote on Twitter: “According to the current status, a person injured other people with an object.” Accordingly, the first emergency calls were received by the Duisburg police at around 5.40 p.m.
The investigators searched and secured the gym, said the police spokesman. Witnesses who were training on site at the time of the crime are currently being questioned. The studio was now secured, it said shortly after 8 p.m. The State Criminal Police Office set up a contact point for witnesses in the adjacent pedestrian zone. A police helicopter was also in use, police officers were looking for traces on all floors of the affected studio.
“We very much regret the incident in our club in Duisburg and hope that the victims will recover quickly,” said John Reed Fitness in an email at the request of the German Press Agency. They support the police investigations in all possible places. “The safety and health of our members and our employees is our top priority. Our goal is for them to feel safe and in good hands in our studios.” The operator did not provide any further information about the incident.
According to a dpa reporter, heavily armed special police forces were on site. Eyewitnesses were questioned by the police in a nearby restaurant, he reported. One still had his sports bag with him.
In connection with the attack, the police asked the population to avoid the affected area around the city hall in the city center. “We are on site with strong forces,” said a spokesman for the Essen police.
Bundestag President Bärbel Bas, who represents a constituency in Duisburg, was dismayed by the attack. “Terrible,” wrote the SPD politician on Twitter on Tuesday evening. “My thoughts are with the injured. I hope that the emergency services will soon be able to clarify the threatening situation.”