Man shoves tourist to their death near famous castle

BERLIN, GERMANY – A 31-year-old American male confessed to charges of murder and rape at the onset of his trial on Monday. He is accused of luring two female U.S. tourists off a trail near Germany’s Neuschwanstein castle and then pushing them down a ravine. This led to a fatal outcome for one of the victims in 2023. In German legal norms, defendants do not formally plead to charges.

The accused, whose identity has been kept confidential due to German privacy laws, did not respond to any questions but acknowledged the accuracy of the defense lawyer Philip Mueller’s statement. Mueller described the accused’s actions as an “unfathomable crime.”

The suspect faces charges of murder, rape with deadly consequences, attempted murder, and child pornography possession. In Germany, a murder conviction could lead to a life sentence.

The horrific incident unfolded on June 14, 2023, at Marienbruecke, a bridge near Neuschwanstein Castle overlooking a gorge. Prosecutors stated that the accused met the 21 and 22-year-old tourists randomly on a hiking path and managed to lure them away.

The younger woman, who was initially forced to the ground and undressed, survived after being pushed down the slope. The older woman, Kelsey Chang, was pushed down when she attempted to intervene. The accused then strangled the younger woman, Eva Liu- a University of Illinois graduate- rendering her unconscious before sexually assaulting her and pushing her down the slope, leading to her death.

Detectives secured a laptop and several cell phones from the suspect, which contained child sexual abuse material. According to authorities, the two women had had no prior interaction with the man before the incident near Neuschwanstein. The suspect was apprehended soon after the attack.

With the trial underway, a verdict is anticipated by mid-March at the earliest.