Prosecutor: Paris grocery gunman linked to 3rd shooting
PARIS (AP) — The shooting of a jogger in a Paris suburb on the same day as the Charlie Hebdo massacre has been linked to the gunman who killed a policewoman and four hostages at a kosher grocery, a prosecutor said Sunday.
In a brief statement, the prosecutor said ballistics tests on shell cases from the shooting Wednesday in Fontenay aux Roses linked them to the automatic weapon at the kosher store stormed two days later. The prosecutor said the jogger was seriously wounded.
Amedy Coulibaly was killed when police stormed the market. That raid took place just minutes after security forces killed the brothers who carried out the massacre at Charlie Hebdo, a satirical newspaper that lampooned Islam and other religions.
Earlier Sunday, video of emerged of Coulibaly where he pledges allegiance to the Islamic State group and defends the attacks on the satirical newspaper and the Jewish store. Al-Qaida's branch in Yemen has previously said it directed the brothers' attack on the newspaper to avenge the honor of the Prophet Muhammad.
In the video, apparently filmed over several days, Coulibaly can be seen with a gun, exercising and giving speeches in fluent French and broken Arabic in front of an Islamic State emblem. He defends the attacks carried out on the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, police and the Jewish store.
"What we are doing is completely legitimate, given what they are doing," Coulibaly tells the camera. "You cannot attack and not expect retribution so you are playing the victim as if you don't understand what's happening."
The SITE Intelligence Group said it had verified the video, and a former drug dealing associate of Coulibaly's confirmed to The Associated Press the man in the video was indeed the slain hostage-taker. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he did not want to attract police attention.
Coulibaly shot a policewoman to death on the outskirts of Paris the day after the Charlie Hebdo massacre, while the brothers who carried it out were on the run. On Friday, with the brothers cornered inside a printing house near Charles de Gaulle airport, he took over the kosher grocery, demanding freedom for the two.
After speaking in French in the video, Coulibaly continues in broken Arabic, stumbling over words he can't pronounce that he seems to be reading from a paper. He mangles grammar as he gives his allegiance to the head of the Islamic State. He repeats a pact that other loyalists have used to pledge their fealty to the militant group and then calls for others to carry out similar attacks.
The video appears to have been filmed over several days. Coulibaly is wearing different clothing in different shots. Someone added text afterward detailing the bloody outcome. At one point, he says Charlie Hebdo will be attacked "tomorrow" and that he and the brothers — longtime acquaintances, according to judicial documents obtained by The Associated Press — were coordinating.
All three men were killed in nearly simultaneous raids by security forces.
Five people detained in connection with the three days of bloodshed in France were released from custody, the Paris prosecutor's spokeswoman said earlier Sunday. Family members of the attackers have been given preliminary charges, but prosecutor's spokeswoman Agnes Thibault-Lecuivre said no one remained in detention Sunday over the attacks that left 17 people dead.
Coulibaly's widow, who has been named as an accomplice, is believed to have traveled to a Turkish city near the Syrian border and then all traces of her were lost, according to a Turkish intelligence official, who was not authorized to speak on the record.
Brothers Said and Cherif Kouachi methodically massacred 12 people at the Charlie Hebdo offices, led police on a chase for two days and were then cornered Friday at a printing house near Charles de Gaulle Airport. Separately, Coulibaly shot a policewoman to death and attacked the Paris kosher market, threatening more violence unless police let the Kouachis go. Four hostages died.
In Germany, arsonists early Sunday attacked a newspaper that republished Charlie Hebdo's cartoons. Two men were detained. No one was hurt in the fire, but the newspaper Hamburger Morgenpost said several files in its archives were destroyed.
WATCH: THE YEAR IN A MOMENT 2014