“If no help had come, I could have bled to death. The guardian angels said it would be tight,” said an 88-year-old sexton after the trial of his tormentor shortly before Christmas, OÖN reported. The likeable and modest sexton was the victim of a brutal attack by a 26-year-old Romanian on September 29, 2022 in the Valentinskirche in Braunau.
During a prayer, the perpetrator repeatedly hit the old man in the head with a 35 centimeter long iron bar. Reason: The sexton had not given the man who was in the Braunau beggar scene any money shortly before. The perpetrator and the victim knew each other because the man from Braunau had slipped the Romanian some money several times before.
Serious head injuries
The 88-year-old suffered severe head injuries from being hit with the iron bar. Among other things, a fracture of the skullcap, several bleedings in the scalp and injuries to the shoulder were diagnosed. The judge sentenced the accused to two and a half years in prison for the crime of intentional grievous bodily harm, and public prosecutor Petra Stranzinger immediately appealed the amount of the sentence. The Higher Regional Court in Ried has now granted this appeal. “The sentence was increased to four years of unconditional imprisonment,” says Alois Ebner, spokesman for the Ried public prosecutor’s office when asked by OÖN.
The Higher Regional Court in Ried justified the increase in sentence, among other things, with a “special need for protection on the part of the victim”. The act was insidious and surprising because the perpetrator and the sexton knew each other.
“Another decisive reason for the increase in the unconditional prison sentence was the particular brutality of the crime,” says Ebner.