Authorities believe that the mysterious deaths of three medieval enthusiasts who were found fatally struck by crossbow bolts inside a German bed-and-breakfast may have been the result of a murder-suicide pact.
Police reportedly found two wills belonging to 53-year-old Torsten W. and 33-year-old Kerstin E., who were found dead Saturday holding hands on a bed in a three-room suite at the hotel in the southern German city of Passau. They’d both suffered crossbow wounds in the head and chest. Below them, 30-year-old Farina C. was found “lying in front of the double bed” with “one shot from a crossbow between the throat and the chin,” public prosecutor Walter Feiler said.
German prosecutors now believe Farina C. shot the couple first before turning the crossbow on herself as part of a “killing on demand,” according to the Associated Press. The couple were found next to their wills by a hotel worker, but authorities have not released details from their documents. It was not immediately clear how the three victims were related.
“We assume that no other people were involved in the deaths of the three,” Bavarian police spokesman Stefan Gaisbauer said Monday, noting that authorities do not believe anybody else was involved in the incident.
The trio’s deaths have been linked to two more women who were found dead Monday inside the bedroom of Farin C.’s apartment after “one of the neighbors heard about the reports in Passau and told police that the mailbox of the apartment was overflowing and that a strange smell was coming from [inside],” the BBC reported.
Police believe the women, one of whom was reportedly the partner of Farin C., likely died several days earlier, but they are still waiting on the autopsy reports for an official cause of death. No crossbows or arrows were found at the apartment, which is about two hours away from the Passau hotel, AFP reported.
“The modus operandi cannot be compared,” a police spokesperson told The Local.
As previously reported by The Daily Beast, the trio arrived at the Bavaria hotel at around 10 p.m. Friday in a white pickup and checked in for three nights, though they reportedly only brought in their crossbow bags. Three crossbows were found in the room Saturday, with one still in its bag, The Local reported.
“It was a strange group,” one of the hotel guests told Merkur news. The man, who had a long white beard down to his mid-chest, wore a formal suit, while both women were dressed completely in black. “They said good evening and just wanted to get to their room quickly,” the guest said.
The 53-year-old man reportedly owned a shop called “Milites Conductius” that sold medieval-style swords, axes, knives, flags, and clothing. He had multiple tattoos on his arms of various symbols of medieval alchemists or natural philosophers, according to the German newspaper Bild.
All three are listed on the Belgium-based International Jousting League website, a group that organizes medieval-style tournaments and ranks its members according to their skill levels. The league’s spokesman told The Daily Beast on Tuesday that the listing means they have registered as affiliates in the past.
None of the guests reported hearing any strange noises overnight, according to the local press, though many noted that there was a violent storm that may have muffled any noise. Authorities are still investigating what occurred Friday evening before the hotel worker entered the second-floor room for cleaning.