BERLIN (Reuters) – A man who killed his wife and three young children before taking his own life had faked a vaccination certificate and feared his children would be taken away from him when the forgery was discovered, a German prosecutor said on Tuesday.
Police found two adults, both 40, and three children aged four, eight and 10 dead from gunshot wounds in a family home in Koenigs Wusterhausen south of Berlin on Saturday.
In a farewell note found by police, the man said he forged a vaccination certificate for his wife. Her employer had found out, prompting the couple to fear they would be arrested and lose their children, prosecutor Gernot Bantleon told Reuters.
Police were called to the house after being alerted by witnesses who had seen lifeless bodies in the house, police and prosecutors said on Saturday.
The grisly case comes as Germany has been tightening up restrictions to try to stem a fourth wave of the coronavirus pandemic. From last month, employees have been required to show they are vaccinated, recovered or test negative for COVID-19.
German authorities agreed last week to bar the unvaccinated from access to all but the most essential businesses such as grocery stores, pharmacies and bakeries, and they also plan to make vaccination mandatory for some jobs.
(Reporting by Emma Thomasson; editing by Mark Heinrich)