The footage shocked Germany and went viral. CCTV cameras caught a man kicking a woman down some stairs at the Berlin metro station – Hermannstrasse – in an unprovoked attack. The incident took place in October 2016 but the video only emerged in December.
Police had released the video in a bid to get public help to track down the attacker.
Now a 28-year-old man known only as Svetoslav S., as his surname has not been made public under German privacy laws, has been jailed for nearly three years for grievous bodily harm.
The footage shows Svetoslav S., with beer bottle in hand, approach the unsuspecting woman from behind, before kicking her in the back, sending her flying forward. The victim suffered a broken arm and wound to the head.
The attacker was arrested eleven days later after being identified by the public as he arrived in Berlin on a bus from France. During his trial, the 28-year-old Bulgarian had admitted kicking the woman down the stairs but had not remembered anything until police released the CCTV footage.
On the night of the attack he had taken a cocktail of drugs: alcohol, marijuana, cocaine and crystal meth, Süddeutsche Zeitung reports. The wife of Svetoslav S told the court he had been aggressive and dependent on recreational drugs since a car crash in 2008.
Bulgarian media reported that Svetoslav S. had a long criminal record in Bulgaria.
During the trial, the woman testified that she had fallen head first and landed on her face. She said she had suffered for months after the attack and had initially avoided contact with the outside world, she said.
Days after his arrest, Germans were shocked by another unprovoked attack on the city’s underground in the same south-eastern area of Neukölln.
A homeless Polish man sleeping on a bench at Schoenleinstrasse was set alight by a group of Libyan and Syrian migrants. He escaped unharmed when passers-by put out the flames.
One of the attackers was jailed for almost three years and three teenagers were given suspended sentences.