Deaths are reported as auto crashes into crowd in German city

Deaths are reported as auto crashes into crowd in German city

The perpetrator - Martin Botzenhardt, a 48-year-old man from Munich - shot himself after crashing the silver-grey coloured van into the outside area of the restaurant, police said.

All the accusations were between 2015 and 2016 and all charges were dropped.

The incident came one year to the day after a truck attack in Stockholm that killed five people. They said there was no sign of a political motive for the attack.

Armin Laschet, the governor of North Rhine-Westphalia state, where Muenster is located, visited the crash scene on Sunday.

German news agency dpa reported that police confirmed arrests in connection with the half-marathon but gave no further details. Two people were killed in the crash and the van driver took his own life.

The German news agency dpa reported, citing anonymous sources, that the auto drove into the crowd.

The van crashed into people sitting in front of the famous Kiepenkerl bar on a warm Saturday afternoon in the city's historic downtown.

Police made the closures because they were investigating a suspicious object found in the van, the AP reports.

The Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper said the suspect's apartment was being searched Saturday night for possible explosives.

Two people are dead and 20 injured after a van drove into a crowd in the historical centre of Munster, Germany. Public prosecutors and police said in a joint statement: "So far there are no indications of a possible background for the crime".

The two victims killed in Muenster were a 51-year-old woman and a 65-year-old man, both from northern Germany. Their names weren't given as is customary in Germany.

Inside the man's apartment, which was nearby the crash scene and raided late Saturday, police found more firecrackers and a "no longer usable AK-47 machine gun".

German Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said on Sunday that the ramming in the town of Muenster is not terror-related, adding that there was evidence that the attacker acted alone.

Deutsche Welle notes that the main suspect in Sunday's planned attack was under observation by police "for some time", so police did not consider him a "concrete threat", although the thwarting of the half-marathon plot appears to have happened at the eleventh hour. Jan Schoessler, who was among those in line, said dozens of people were waiting shortly after doors opened at 7 p.m.

Other shocking pictures showed panicked people calling for help in chaotic scenes as others rushed to the aid of the injured.