BERLIN, Sept 13 — A German court sentenced a 50-year-old man to life behind bars today for last year murdering a petrol station worker who insisted he follow rules and wear a coronavirus mask, German media reported today.

The shooting in the western town of Idar-Oberstein over pandemic restrictions shocked Germans at a time when fears that coronavirus deniers were turning to violence.

Germany’s dpa news agency and other media said the court had found the defendant, identified only as Mario N., in line with privacy laws, guilty of murder and sentenced him to life.

He had admitted killing the 20-year-old petrol station worker but pleaded to manslaughter with limited culpability. An expert had found some alcohol in his blood.


Prosecutors said the cashier had asked the man to comply with rules and wear a face mask while paying for beer.

After initially refusing to do so and leaving the petrol station, the defendant returned wearing a mask but pulled it down when approaching the cashier and after another brief exchange shot him in the head.

The victim died immediately and Mario N. later gave himself up at a police station, saying the coronavirus measures were causing him stress.


No one at the court in Bad Kreuznach was immediately available to confirm the ruling. — Reuters