A 14-year-old girl is found dead near a hut in Bad Emstal in September 2023. Now the Kassel Regional Court has found a 21-year-old acquaintance of the student guilty of murder.

In the trial surrounding the violent death of a 14-year-old in Bad Emstal in northern Hesse, the defendant was sentenced to eleven years and nine months in prison for murder. The Kassel Regional Court found it proven that the 21-year-old had strangled his acquaintance in September 2023 in order to obtain sexual gratification. “The sentence is to be carried out in a social therapeutic institution,” said the presiding judge.

The court also ordered preventive detention. It was at least likely that the accused had a tendency to commit serious crimes, according to the reasoning.

The victim was discovered dead on September 28th last year on the side of a dirt road in Bad Emstal (Kassel district) after she had been missing since the previous evening. The court is convinced that the 21-year-old strangled the schoolgirl to satisfy his sexual urges. In addition, the German national disturbed the peace of the dead by touching the girl’s body in a sexually motivated manner and filming and photographing this.

Because the accused was 20 years and eleven months old at the time of the crime and was therefore an adolescent, a youth chamber of the Kassel Regional Court was responsible for the case. It had to decide whether the accused would be sentenced under juvenile or adult criminal law.

The public prosecutor and representatives of the joint plaintiffs had demanded a life sentence with the possibility of subsequent preventive detention and a conviction under adult criminal law.

The defendant’s defense attorney had argued for the application of juvenile criminal law. He also stated that he did not consider the element of murder based on the satisfaction of sexual urges to be fulfilled and requested that his client be convicted of manslaughter. He considered a prison sentence of less than ten years to be appropriate.

The court did not follow these explanations. It considered that the murder was committed to satisfy sexual urges and that the murder was committed by violating the most personal sphere of life and personal rights through taking photographs, and applied adult criminal law. The defendant was less than a month before turning 21 when the crime was committed. He also led an independent life. A psychiatric expert had previously certified that the defendant was fully responsible.

At the start of the trial last week, the accused admitted to having strangled the 14-year-old until she lost consciousness after he had gotten into an argument with her. He then undressed her and filmed and videotaped her in order to prevent her from reporting the incident to the police when she woke up. However, he did not intend to kill her. On Wednesday, he apologized to the family of the woman who was killed. “I would apologize to the family that things got to this point on September 27th, but I can’t do more than apologize,” he said.

An appeal can be filed against the judgment.