Information concerning the assault, JKU Campus

JKU Rector Meinhard Lukas addresses colleagues and students after yesterday's attack on a JKU professor.

JKU Logo am Campus
JKU Logo am Campus

Dear colleagues,
Dear students,

I would like to inform you that yesterday, around noon, a professor at our university was unexpectedly attacked by a man in the outdoor area of the Science Park. The perpetrator attacked the professor from behind with a hammer to the head and upper body. He then fled.

JKU employees at the Institute of the professor concerned immediately notified the police and ambulance services. Upon their arrival, they were able to quickly treat the professor harmed and get him safely to the hospital. Apart from suffering from shock, the professor sustained injuries to the head (wound) and the ribs which, undoubtedly, caused a great deal of pain. Yesterday, thank goodness, he was able to go home.

Yesterday I contacted the professor in question per text message and was able to express our concern on behalf of the JKU, convey our best wishes for a speedy recovery and offer him any other support he may need. I plan to speak with him on the phone today. I also spoke with the Director of the Upper-Austrian state police, to get a better  idea of the crime itself and the current situation. I have also been in close contact with the institute concerned since yesterday to offer them any necessary support.

The motive for the offence is presumably linked to the perpetrator’s severe mental state of mind. He is in safe custody and has been admitted to psychiatric care at the Neuromed Campus. We now know the name of the perpetrator and that he completed a Master’s degree at the JKU. He is currently not enrolled at the JKU.

I believe our campus is – and always will be – an ideal and wonderful place to come together, meet with others, network and communicate. In this regard you can imagine then how completely shocked I am by this unexpected incident. I am sure that you feel the same and, of course, those who were present when this happened will feel this even more strongly. On behalf of all of us here at the JKU, I would like to wish our injured colleague all the very best and a speedy recovery!

My sincere thanks goes to the first responders, particularly the employees present at the scene, the paramedics and the police, whose intervention and competent actions may have prevented something even worse from happening.

The Rectorate is taking this incident very seriously and will do everything in its power to support the state authorities and the public prosecutor’s office with their investigation. We will also support the victims as they come to terms with this incident.

Kind regards,

Meinhard Lukas