Officer robs German parliament office, kills self: police

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A police officer working for the German parliament robbed its post office at gunpoint before killing himself with a shot to the head, authorities said Thursday.

Berlin police said the 48-year-old man entered the post office in a building housing the parliament's library and archive late Wednesday wearing a paper mask.

He allegedly threatened a 42-year-old female employee with the gun and demanded cash.

Because she only slowly complied with his orders, he struck her with the firearm on the back of the head, incurring bruises and cuts, then fled with the cash, police said in a statement.

The post office, which is not open to the public, is guarded by security personnel but police said the man had access because he worked in the building.

About an hour after the robbery, passers-by reported discovering a dead body on a walking trail in an eastern district to police.

Officers found the policeman with an apparently self-inflected bullet wound to the head next to the stolen money, the mask and loaded guns.

"Based on a preliminary investigation, personal problems in the life of the 48-year-old were the motive for the crime," the police statement said.

© 2011 AFP

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