Lone gunman spent year planning Munich shooting rampage

People said prayers yesterday at a memorial of flowers and candles laid at the Olympia Einkaufszentrum shopping centre. Picture: AFP/Getty Images
People said prayers yesterday at a memorial of flowers and candles laid at the Olympia Einkaufszentrum shopping centre. Picture: AFP/Getty Images
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A teenager who killed nine people and left 27 wounded in a shooting ­rampage in Munich was a withdrawn ­loner who had been planning the attack for up to a year, ­German authorities said.

Officials said the 18-year-old German-Iranian, identified only as David S due to ­German privacy laws but named in some media reports as David Ali Sonboly, had been a victim of bullying who suffered from panic attacks set off by contact with other people.

Meanwhile, Munich police last night arrested a 16-year-old friend of the attacker.

David S had been seeing a doctor for treatment over a number of psychiatric problems which began in 2015 with inpatient hospital care, followed up with outpatient visits.

Officers said medication for his problems had been found his room. Toxicological and autopsy results are still not available, so it is not yet clear whether he was taking the medicine when he embarked on his shooting spree on ­Friday. Investigators said the gunman had been bullied by schoolmates at least once four years ago, and had been ­fascinated by previous mass shootings.

None of the bullies were among his victims, however, and none of those killed were known to him.

The attack took place on the fifth anniversary of the killing of 77 people by Norwegian right-wing extremist Anders Behring Breivik, whose ­victims included ­dozens of young people.

Investigators said the Munich shooter had researched that slaughter online and had last year ­visited the site of a previous school shooting in the German town of ­Winnenden.

Robert Heimberger, Bavaria’s top official, said: “He had been planning this crime since last summer”, citing a “manifesto” linked to the shooting found in the gunman’s locked room in the apartment he shared with his parents and brother.

Mr Heimberger said he could not reveal details of the document yet because there are “many more terabytes” of information to evaluate, but described the gunman as a “devoted player” of group internet “killer games”, ­pitting virtual shooters against each other.

Weapons are strictly controlled in Germany and police are still trying to determine exactly how the shooter obtained the Glock 17 used in the attack.

Mr Heimberger said it is “very likely” the suspect purchased the weapon illegally online on the “dark net”.