Norbert Poehlke

Norbert Poehlke

German police officer, murderer and bank robber
Date of Birth: 15.09.1951
Country: Italy

  1. Biography of Norbert Pelke
  2. The Murder of Siegfried Pfitzer
  3. The Death of Eugene Wethey
  4. The Killing of Wilfried Scheider
  5. The Discovery of Pelke's Police Uniform
  6. The Investigation and Tragic End

Biography of Norbert Pelke

Norbert Pelke was a German police officer, murderer, and bank robber. He gained the nickname 'The Hammer-Killer' for his brutal methods of dispatching car owners and using a hammer in subsequent robberies, in which he would use stolen vehicles to make a clean getaway.

The Murder of Siegfried Pfitzer

On May 3, 1984, the lifeless body of 47-year-old Siegfried Pfitzer was discovered at a rest stop on a highway in Marbach, West Germany. He had been shot in the head. His car was found a quarter mile away from his body in Erbstetten. The victim's vehicle was linked to a bank robbery where the assailant had smashed the cashier's window with a hammer and taken the money.

The Death of Eugene Wethey

On December 21, near another rest stop in Grossbottwar, 37-year-old Eugene Wethey was found dead. A week later, his car was used in a bank robbery in Cleebronn, where the perpetrator once again employed a hammer as his weapon of choice.

The Killing of Wilfried Scheider

On July 22, 1985, 26-year-old Wilfried Scheider was found shot in the head on a parking lot in Beilstein-Schmidhausen. The weapon used to kill him was a Walther P5 pistol, a model specifically designed for German police officers. Scheider's car was found at the scene of a bank robbery in Spiegelberg.

The Discovery of Pelke's Police Uniform

During a thorough search of a train station in Ludwigsburg on September 29, 1985, anti-terrorist officers found a police uniform in one of the locked lockers. The uniform led them to Norbert Pelke, a seasoned officer with 14 years of experience from Stuttgart. Pelke claimed he had left the uniform in the locker while rushing to attend a family member's funeral. Suspicions arose when it was discovered that none of his relatives had died recently, while his daughter had succumbed to cancer in 1984.

The Investigation and Tragic End

The investigation gained momentum when Pelke requested and was granted sick leave on October 14. A few days later, police officers went to his house to ask him questions regarding the murders and robberies. Unable to gain entry, they entered the house fearing that Pelke might be attempting to escape. They discovered Pelke's deceased wife in the bathroom with two bullets in her head, and his son Adrian was found shot in one of the bedrooms.

Three days later, on October 23, Pelke and his other son Gabriel were also found dead in the officer's car near Brindisi, Italy. There was no doubt that Norbert had committed suicide following the series of murders to avoid punishment. Pelke's gun was determined to be the murder weapon, and the case was closed.