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German authorities investigate death during police check

by Press room

Authorities in Germany are probing the death of a man who collapsed on Monday during a police check in the city of Mannheim. 

The case has attracted allegations of police violence after a video surfaced allegedly showing the man being beaten by officers while lying on the ground.

Gokay Akbulut, a federal lawmaker who represents Mannheim, called Tuesday for a thorough investigation of the case, saying it demonstrated the need for an independent complaints procedure.

“I receive many cases of police use of force that are not adequately investigated. This happens particularly often when there are no witnesses and no video recordings exist,” Akbulut wrote in a statement about the incident. 

“Structural deficits in the police must be brought to light. It is important to keep up the pressure with further protest events so that there is a complete clarification,” she added. 

Police in the southwestern state of Baden-Wuerttemberg said officers were alerted by a doctor at Mannheim’s Central Institute of Mental Health that a patient required help.

The 47-year-old man resisted officers, prompting them to “exert immediate force” whereupon he collapsed and had to be resuscitated, state police said. The man later died in hospital.

A short video posted on social media shows a police officer hitting the head of a man lying on the ground.

Lawmaker Akbulut called said it was important for police to be properly trained in how to deal with people who have mental health problems.

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