In Brief: 57-year-old man convicted of murdering son of former German president

The man, identified as Gregor S., was convicted of stabbing Dr. Fritz von Weizsäcker in Berlin. He is sentenced to 12 years imprisonment.

Photo by: Bill Oxford, Unsplash

By Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson, Kate Brady and Monika Müller-Kroll

A 57-year-old man from the western city of Andernach was sentenced to 12 years imprisonment at a psychiatric facility for murdering the youngest son of former German President Richard von Weizsäcker.

The defendant, identified as Gregor S., was convicted of stabbing Dr. Fritz von Weizsäcker while he was giving a lecture at a Berlin clinic last November, and also attacking an off-duty police officer who tried to intervene.

The defendant had confessed to the crime on the second day of his trial, saying he was happy his victim was dead.

The proceeding was briefly halted yesterday morning after the defendant filed bias claims against both the psychological expert who evaluated him and the judge. The claims were dismissed.

***

Chancellor Merkel’s Christian Democrats are moving ahead with a plan that would put more women in charge of their party.

Germany’s conservatives might have delivered the country’s first female chancellor, but representation of women is by no means the party’s forte.

About 26% of CDU party members are women.

And in parliament, only the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party has a smaller proportion of women than the CDU.

But after 11 hours of talks, CDU leaders agreed to a gradual mandatory quota for leadership positions — starting at the local level. From 2021, they agreed the quota will be 30%, before finally reaching 50% from 2025.

The controversial measure will be voted on at December’s party convention.

***

Germany’s top court has ruled long-term tenants can demand their landlords make renovations, but not for free.

The judges in Karlsruhe decided yesterday the costs of minor renovations generally have to be shared equally between renters and landlords.

But property owners are only required to renovate if the condition of an apartment has significantly deteriorated.

The two Berlin cases in question will now be sent back to lower appeals courts.

This news is brought to you in cooperation with Berliner Rundfunk.

Whether it’s our coverage of the coronavirus, rent freezes or more light-hearted subjects like Berlin’s pandas, you can count us for factual and informative content. We are the go-to source for the English-as-a-common-language community in Berlin and beyond. The pandemic will challenge us to find new ways of doing reporting, but we will continue to bring you the programming you love and news you can trust. We are a listener-funded public radio station, driven by donors like you. So please consider donating today to keep us on air, online and in your community.