Soldier charged in break-in, stabbing
Stars and Stripes August 12, 2009
HOHENFELS, Germany — A U.S. soldier who allegedly broke into a house in a quiet German town in June, stabbed two women and cut a man with a knife, has been charged with attempted premeditated murder and other crimes.
Pvt. 1st Class Jacob J. Racine, 25, assigned to 1st Battalion, 4th Infantry Regiment, appeared at an Article 32 hearing in Hohenfels on Tuesday. An Article 32 is similar to a civilian grand jury, determining if there is sufficient evidence to send the case to a court-martial.
Racine is charged with attempted premeditated murder, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and breaking and entering in relation to an incident that occurred on June 14 in Parsberg, a small town near the U.S. training area at Hohenfels.
Investigating officer Lt. Col. Chad Arcano heard testimony from the soldier’s alleged victims who told him Racine broke into their house in the early hours of the morning.
During the alleged break-in, Racine stabbed two women, Roswitha Graf and Tatjana Fischer, multiple times in their heads, backs and stomachs with a kitchen knife, witnesses testified. The women spent more than a week in the hospital recovering from their injuries.
A male occupant of the house, Martin Just, testified that he came to the women’s aid after hearing screams. He received a cut finger as he struggled with the soldier, who then dropped his knife and jumped onto the scaffolding to escape, he said.
Racine appeared calm during the attack, Just said.
"In my opinion it was like he was on drugs," he said, through an interpreter, adding that blood was spread throughout the home’s lower floor after the attack.
Racine faces a maximum sentence of life in prison without parole if convicted of attempted premeditated murder.