"In the afternoon (01.01), the Essen public prosecutor's office requested a district court to issue an arrest warrant for a 50-year-old German from Essen who is suspected of several attempted murders. In the evening, the judge issued an arrest warrant for the suspect. He ploughed his car into crowds of people in Bottrop and Essen on the New Year's eve. As a result, according to the latest data, eight people sustained injuries, one of them is in serious condition," a joint statement by the Essen public prosecutor's office and police of the cities of Recklinghausen and Muenster said.
According to the police, all people targeted in the attack are either foreigners or those of foreign descent, including Syrian and Afghan nationals, as well as a German citizen of Turkish origin.
On the New Year's night, the driver, 50, repeatedly tried to plough his Mercedes car into passers-by in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia — first in Bottrop, then in Essen. The driver was detained.