American tourist dies after attack near Germany's famous Neuschwanstein castle

BySarah Hucal and Morgan Winsor ABCNews logo
Thursday, June 15, 2023
American tourist dies after attack near Germany's famous castle
A 30-year-old American man is in custody following an alleged assault and homicide on a trail near an iconic landmark castle.

BERLIN -- An American tourist was killed and another was injured when they were attacked by an American man they met near the famous Neuschwanstein castle in southern Germany, authorities said Thursday.

The incident occurred Wednesday afternoon in the German state of Bavaria near the Marienbruecke, a pedestrian bridge popular for its stunning view of Neuschwanstein. Nestled on the edge of the Bavarian Alps, the 19th-century palace was the inspiration for the castle in Disney's "Sleeping Beauty." Two women, ages 21 and 22, met a 30-year-old man on a hiking trail east of the bridge who then lured them onto a path that led to a viewpoint, according to a statement from the Bavarian State Police.

The man then "physically attacked" the younger woman, police said. When the other woman tried to intervene, the man choked her and pushed her down a steep slope. He then apparently attempted to sexually assault the 21-year-old before also pushing her down the slope. Both women fell nearly 50 meters (165 feet), according to police.

A mountain rescue service from the nearby town of Fuessen rescued both women. The 22-year-old was injured but responsive and taken to a hospital. The 21-year-old suffered serious injuries and was airlifted to a hospital, where she died overnight, police said.

The suspect had left the scene but was arrested close by soon after, according to police.

Although the names of the suspect and the victims have not yet been released, a Bavarian State Police spokesperson confirmed to ABC News that all three were American tourists.

The suspect appeared before a judge in the nearby town of Kempten on Thursday and was ordered to be held in jail pending a potential indictment. He is under investigation on suspicion of murder, attempted murder and sexual offense, according to police.

Police have called for any witnesses to come forward as they continue to investigate the alleged attack.