Investigators have reportedly found medication for the treatment of a mental illness at the home of the co-pilot suspected of deliberately crashing a passenger plane in the French Alps.
As investigators attempt to build up a picture of pilot Andreas Lubitz and any possible motives he had to crash the Germanwings plane, new media reports emerged on Sunday saying he had suffered from vision problems – adding to earlier reports he was severely depressed.
French prosecutors believe Lubitz locked himself alone into the cockpit of the Germanwings Airbus on Tuesday and steered it into a mountain, killing all 150 people on board.
German police found a number “of medicines for the treatment of psychological illness” during a search at his Dusseldorf home, newspaper Welt am Sonntag weekly said, quoting an unnamed high-ranking investigator as saying he had been treated by several neurologists and psychiatrists.
Sunday’s edition of Germany’s Bild weekly and the New York Times, which cited two officials with knowledge of the investigation, said Lubitz had also sought treatment for problems with his sight.
German prosecutors believe Lubitz hid an illness from his airline but have not specified the ailment, and said he had apparently been written off sick on the day the Airbus crashed on its route from Barcelona to Dusseldorf, the AFP news agency reported.
Bild had earlier published an interview on Saturday with a woman who said she had had a relationship in 2014 with Lubitz.
“When I heard about the crash, I remembered a sentence, over and over again, that he said,” the woman, a flight attendant of 26 named only as Maria W, told Bild.
“One day I’ll do something that will change the system, and then everyone will know my name and remember it’,” she said he told her.
“I didn’t know what he meant by that at the time, but now it’s obvious,” the attendant said.
On Friday, German authorities said they had found torn-up sick notes showing that the co-pilot was suffering from an illness that should have grounded him on the day of the tragedy.
Germanwings, the budget airline of the flag carrier Lufthansa, has said he had not submitted any sick note at the time.
A Lufthansa spokesman declined to comment, the Reuters news agency reported.
German media reported on Friday that Lubitz, who appeared happy and healthy to acquaintances, had suffered from depression.
The Dusseldorf University Hospital said on Friday that Lubitz had been a patient there over the past two months and last went in for a “diagnostic evaluation” on March 10.
It declined to provide details, citing medical confidentiality, but denied reports it had treated Lubitz for depression.