After the violent crime against twelve-year-old Luise from Freudenberg in North Rhine-Westphalia, the police and public prosecutors are investigating the background to the case. It was initially unclear whether the police had already found a murder weapon. The investigators did not provide any information on the motive, with reference to the children who were still under criminal responsibility.

Two girls, ages 12 and 13, have confessed to stabbing the 12-year-old. The alleged perpetrators and the victim are said to have known each other.

Justice Minister Buschmann dismayed

Federal Minister of Justice Marco Buschmann was deeply shocked last night. Children under the age of 14 are not criminally prosecuted, “but our legal system knows other ways to react, such as child and youth welfare law and family law,” said the FDP politician to the German Press Agency.

The twelve-year-old had been missing since Saturday and was found dead on Sunday near a cycle path in Rhineland-Palatinate, right on the state border with North Rhine-Westphalia. Numerous knife wounds were found during the autopsy. The girl had bled to death.

The suspect girls were targeted by the investigators because their statements from an initial hearing contradicted the statements of other witnesses. At a repeated hearing in the presence of legal guardians and psychologists on Monday, they were confronted with the contradictions and finally confessed to the crime, the investigators said.

Girls no longer with their families

The two girls no longer live with their parents for the time being. They were “housed outside the home environment,” said the Siegen-Wittgenstein district responsible. “This is also linked to the fact that the children do not attend their previous schools.”

The girls would still have contact with their parents. “Because of the young age of the girls, contact with the family is very important for the development of successful support and is supported in this respect,” said the district. For the two suspects, it is also a “very unusual situation that requires a lot of empathy and prudent action,” said district youth department head Thomas Wüst.

The group is also in contact with the family of the 12-year-old who died. “As soon as Luise’s family wants it, the district youth welfare office is always available to support the family,” said the district administration.