German woman on trial accused of killing 5 of her 6 children

BERLIN (AP) — A German woman has gone on trial accused of killing five of her six children in a case that caused widespread shock in Germany last year.

Christiane K., whose full surname wasn’t released for privacy reasons, appeared Monday before a regional court in the western city of Wuppertal, declining to answer any of the judges’ questions.

Prosecutors allege that the 28-year-old gave her young children large doses of various medications to put them into a stupor, before taking them into the bathroom one by one and drowning, strangling or suffocating them.

She had earlier sent her eldest son to stay with his grandmother, who called the police. Officers who arrived at the family’s home in the town of Solingen found three girls, aged 1, 2 and 3, and two boys, 6 and 8, dead in their beds.

According to German news agency dpa, the defendant has denied killing her children in early Sept. 2020. Instead, she claims that a masked intruder entered her home, tied and gagged her, and then killed the children, a version of events for which investigators say there is no supporting evidence.

Prosecutors say that before the killing the woman had a heated exchange of messages with her then-husband, from who she was separated, and threatened that he wouldn’t see his children again.

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