Germany Tugce: Manslaughter charge over student killing

A picture of Tugce and flowers pictured at the grave of Tugce Albayrak Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Tugce Albayrak was left brain-dead by the attack

Prosecutors in Germany have brought manslaughter charges against a man for the death of student Tugce Albayrak, whose killing shocked the nation.

The suspect, 18, is said to have hit the trainee teacher on the head after she tried to stop a group of young men harassing two girls on 15 November.

Ms Albayrak fell and was left in a coma until her parents decided to stop her life-support machine two weeks later.

Doctors had concluded that she would not regain consciousness.

The 23-year-old woman of Turkish origin was widely hailed in Germany as a "role model".

Image copyright Bild Zeitung
Image caption CCTV video captured the attack on Ms Albayrak and was tweeted by Germany's Bild newspaper

She was hit during an altercation in the car park of a fast-food restaurant in the city of Offenbach.

Inside the restaurant she had stood up for two young girls as they were harassed by the accused and several other young men in his company.

After the decision by the prosecutors to bring manslaughter charges, the court in nearby Darmstadt decided to remand the 18-year-old in custody.

Last week, the suspect was attacked while in custody, Germany's Bild newspaper reports.

Another inmate broke his nose when he punched him in the face, the paper says and adds that it is not clear whether the attack was related to the case.

Image copyright AP
Image caption Thousands in Germany attended vigils in honour of the victim and praised her courage

The student's death triggered a very strong reaction in Germany with many calling her a "national heroine" and a "role model" and thousands attending her funeral and vigils across the country.

President Joachim Gauck wrote to her family to say: "Like countless citizens, I am shocked and appalled by this terrible act. Tugce has earned gratitude and respect from us all."

More than 100,000 people have signed a petition for her to be awarded an order of merit posthumously.

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