A Berlin court is examining whether Ghanaian Bismark B. poses a danger to society and should be treated, the local outlet B.Z. Berlin reports. The man was put on trial for a robbery after he had been detained by police 107 times and managed to remain free for years.
The criminal proceedings repeatedly ended when the man was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia.
His crimes included shoplifting and the theft of food from vendors along Kurfurstendamm Street in west Berlin, famous for its shops. A year ago, the man is said to have threatened a saleswoman with a kitchen cleaver.
"The man was a regular guest… He has come three or four times a week for years and stole food," said employee Martina K. (53).
According to the witness, he ignored bans as well as claimed that he owned the business and could take what he wanted. He is said to have picked the most expensive goods and kept a record of everything he stole.
He changed his relatively peaceful habits in November last year, when his confrontation with a saleswoman ended brutally; he threatened to kill her, wielding a knife.
"He suddenly kicked me in the chest with his foot. Had not a customer stood behind me, I would have been beaten," the woman told the media.
However he was released shortly after his arrest, and five months later, he tried to steal shower gel, threatening a staffer with words "Do not touch me. I kill you. "