German 'chatroom killer' on trial
The man said ‘seeing the eyes of Jesus’ had caused him to snap.
Essen -- A German man admitted on Wednesday killing two women he had met online but claimed the first case was an accident and that in the second, seeing "the eyes of Jesus" had caused him to snap.
Christian Grotheer, 27, from Hamburg got to know around 300 people on Internet chatrooms, most of them women, his lawyer Burkhard Benecken said, reading from a statement from the defendant on the first day of his trial.
He used the online nicknames "Rosenboy" or "Riddick300" on the Internet chat rooms, the latter after a fictional serial killer in the gory 2000 science-fiction movie Pitch Black with Vin Diesel, daily Die Welt said.
Spending tens of thousands of hours on dating sites like knuddels.de (which means loosely cuddles.de) and making himself out to be a wholesome, normal guy who wrote poetry, he went on dates with around 100 women.
Two of the romantic evenings ended in death.
Dubbed in the press "Germany's first Internet murderer," Grotheer is accused of stabbing to death the two women, 26-year-old Jessica K. on June 5, 2008 and 39-year-old Regina B. 12 days later.
With the first woman, who went by the Internet name "babylove," Grotheer got into a heated argument, during which he only "touched her on the throat" when to his horror she suddenly dropped dead, his lawyer said.
The woman's corpse was found 14 days later -- in such a state that the exact cause of death could not be determined. The prosecution alleges that he stabbed her in the back.
In the second case, Spiegel Online reported that after the two had sex at her flat, she cooked a meal for them both before going for a walk with her sausage dog.
Grotheer then followed her, armed with a kitchen life, knocking her over by a field and stabbing her 12 times in the back and 14 times in the chest. Her body was discovered the next day by a passer-by, according to Spiegel Online.
Grotheer has a different version of events. He said claims that after consensual sex, the mother-of-three had demanded money and had threatened to go to the police and accuse him of rape.
This was so traumatic, he said, that it made him recall seeing his father rape his mother when he was six years old. Grotheer then saw "the eyes of Jesus" and stabbed the woman, his lawyer said.
"He is more or less trying to put all the blame on the victim," said prosecutor Michael Schieffers. "He claims he was possessed and had nothing to do with the murder."
Grotheer wanted it stressed to the court that "except for these two, all the other 98 are still alive," his lawyer said, and was therefore not a serial killer.
The trial is set to last another 13 days.