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Munich shooter was bullied loner, planned attack for a year

 
Published July 25, 2016

MUNICH — The 18-year-old behind the deadly shooting rampage in Munich was a withdrawn loner obsessed with playing "killer" video games in his bedroom, a victim of bullying who suffered from panic attacks set off by contacts with other people, investigators said Sunday, adding that he had planned the attack for a year.

Law enforcement officials piecing together a portrait of the shooter said he was seeing a doctor up to last month for treatment of depression and psychiatric problems that began in 2015 with inpatient hospital care followed by outpatient visits.

They said medication for his problems had been found in his room. But toxicological and autopsy results were yet not available, so it's not clear whether he was taking the medicine before he went on his shooting spree Friday, killing nine people and leaving dozens wounded.

The German-Iranian, identified only as David S. due to Germany privacy laws, had earlier been described by investigators as being bullied by schoolmates at least once four years ago and being fascinated by previous mass shootings. But none of those killed were known to him, investigators said.

Late Sunday, police said they had taken in for questioning a friend of the shooter who might have known of the attack plan. Further details were not immediately available, but Germany's dpa news agency reported the 16-year-old boy had gone to police himself after the act.

Explosion: Police in the southern German city of Ansbach said a man was killed when an explosive device he was believed to be carrying went off near an open-air music festival, injuring 10 others. Ansbach police said in a statement that just after 10 p.m. Sunday they were alerted to an explosion in the city center.

"A man, according to our current knowledge the perpetrator, died" in the blast, police said in the short statement. Further details weren't immediately available and police did not answer phone calls.

The dpa news agency reported that the nearby open-air concert with some 2,500 in attendance was shut down as a precaution after the explosion.

Machete attack: A 21-year-old refugee from Syria killed a woman with a machete in southwest Germany on Sunday, and was arrested after a motorist deliberately ran him down, according to the police.

The man, whose identity was not released, had been involved in at least one previous violent episode, according to officials in Reutlingen, where the afternoon attack occurred near the central bus station.

"At this time, we suspect this crime is linked to relationship troubles," said Michael Schaal, a police spokesman.