They had done everything right. Seven-year-old Constantin and his mother stopped as cyclists at the red light. In the green light, the woman said to her son, "Let's go!" But the next moment a truck appeared. He turned right. Not fast, but without stopping. Lorenz K. did not notice the collision with the child. He dragged it along.
One and a half years later, Constantin's parents sat with him in the courtroom when the verdict was pronounced against the man who had taken their sweetheart: six months probation and a $ 500 cash allowance.
No word of regret
A process of negligent homicide, which the parents strive for composure and endured incredibly bravely. Until the hearing on Wednesday, Lorenz K., a 61-year-old from Neukölln, had not contacted them. No word of regret. No attempt to explain why he had not seen in the mirror of his vehicle weighing several tons and had not stopped for several seconds – ten of which were later in the process. "For people who go through hell, it takes a source of insight to get a little bit closer to peace," said the lawyer of the parents, who were now co-plaintiffs.
"Suddenly the truck appeared"
The 13th of June, 2018. The morning for Constantin began happily, because it was talked about his birthday in five days. Then the boy and his mother went to school. It was 7:35 am when they were heading south on the cycle path on Nauener Strasse in Spandau. At the intersection Brunsbütteler Damm they stopped at red and rose to green. "Suddenly the truck appeared," the mother described as the first witness.
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The room was very quiet when the mother said it. Concentrated she spoke and composed. She is still in psychological treatment, but she had to wait seven months for therapy. "Suddenly the truck appeared," said the 41-year-old educator. He had touched her son with the right front tire. "I threw my bike away and screamed," says Julia W.-S. But the driver did not notice that either.
The right rear tire rolled over the boy. Constantin died in the eyes of his mother.
She stood completely helpless in the street. She saw the truck driver, pointed with both hands to her son: "And now?" Probably Lorenz K. was in shock. His statement, however, is hard to bear. "What should I still pay attention to," the man replied, according to the mother.
"The bike path was completely visible to him"
The unemployed K. had a ten-year professional experience when it came to the accident. He confessed that he had caused the disaster. "That he has disregarded the necessary care, he is," said the defender. It was "a momentary failure". "And then you do not have the chance to see such a little boy in the high cab."
But it was anything but a brief moment. K. could have seen the two cyclists over three mirrors of his vehicle and must, so an accident expert. For several seconds. "The bike path was completely visible to him." And the statement of K., he had been at the red light, according to the technical data from the truck is not true. But it was correct that K. drove slowly. At a speed of nine kilometers per hour had come to collision with the boy.
"The day has changed my life"
According to the expert, Lorenz K. would have been able to "visually perceive" the child at the time of the collision. "If the defendant had initiated an emergency braking, the boy would not have been overrun." A police officer, who was at the scene of the accident, now cried with tears and said in the process: "The day has changed my life."
A tragedy that was caused by a failure in a moment? So the defender saw it, demanded a "very mild" punishment. In fact, judgments about deadly right-turn accidents often cause incomprehension when it comes to a fine at the end. "But here we talk of several seconds," said the judge. Although K. drove slowly, but have not made a picture of the road. "There was enough time and distance not to enter or stop in the area." With the sentence imposed, the court followed the prosecutor's request.