Freak umbrella accident kills German teen
Friends and family of a 14-year-old German girl were in mourning Thursday after she was killed in a freak accident involving a broken umbrella thrown by a fellow pupil, police said.
Sandra was one of a group of teens who had gathered in their school playground in Delbrueck, western Germany on Tuesday evening, despite it being the school holidays, and started throwing around the discarded item.
"It was like a game of catch. If you dropped it, you lost," the Bild daily quoted a fellow pupil as saying.
A 17-year-old boy then threw the umbrella, by then reduced to the wooden handle and the metal pole and spike, over the top of the school building like a spear.
It hit Sandra in the chest. Friends performed first aid and called emergency services, police said, but medics at the scene and in hospital were unable to save the girl's life.
"The statements of the young people match up. Our preliminary enquiries have ruled out any suspicion of deliberate killing," a police statement said.
Friends have left flowers, candles and messages of condolence in the playground.
© 2011 AFP