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German Man Drove into crowd, 61 injure including 20 children

BERLIN — A German man who drove his car into a crowd celebrating Carnival, injuring dozens of people including many children, is being investigated on suspicion of attempted murder, prosecutors said Tuesday.

The 29-year-old man, who suffered serious head injuries in the crash, lived in the central German town of Volkmarsen, where the incident took place Monday.

Authorities said 61 people were injured when the man plowed into a crowd watching the traditional “Rose Monday” procession, including 20 children. Those injured ranged in age from 2 to 85. By Tuesday, 35 remained hospitalized, some with life-threatening injuries.

Prosecutors said they were still investigating the driver’s motive, but alleged he drove his car “into a large group of people with the intention to kill.” A court approved the Frankfurt prosecutors’ request to detain the suspect for the duration of the investigation.

The silver Mercedes station wagon the man drove was registered to him, police spokesman Henning Hinn said.

The crash in Volkmarsen, a town of about 7,000 near Kassel, about 280 kilometers (175 miles) southwest of Berlin, came at the height of Germany’s celebration of Carnival, with the biggest parades in Cologne, Duesseldorf and Mainz.

All other Carnival parades in the central state of Hesse were ended Monday as a precaution. Processions resumed Tuesday amid a heightened police presence.