"I have killed a man, but I am not a murderer"
Talat Pasha was a grand vizier and the de facto political leader of the Ottoman Empire during WW1, and also considered the architect of the Armenian Genocide during the same:
Considered the primary architect of the Armenian Genocide, he ordered that almost the entire Armenian population of the empire be deported to the Syrian Desert in order to cause their deaths. In a cable dated 13 July 1915, Talat stated that "the aim of the Armenian deportations is the final solution of the Armenian Question". Of 40,000 Armenians deported from Erzurum, it is estimated that fewer than 200 reached Deir ez-Zor. When more Armenians survived than intended, Talat ordered a second wave of massacres in 1916. In all, about 1 million Armenians were murdered. In 1918, Talat told journalist Muhittin Birgen that "I assume full responsibility for the severity applied" during the Armenian deportation and "I absolutely don't regret my deed".
After the Armenian Genocide failed to garner much action from the world community, the Armenians set up a secret assassination plot called Operation Nemesis. Talat Pasha was obviously on the list, along with 99 other genocide perpetrators. Following the end of WW1, Pasha had fled to Germany where he was living in Berlin. An Armenian student, Soghomon Tehlirian, was the volunteer tasked with assassinating Pasha.
On 15 March 1921 around 10:45, a Tuesday and a rainy spring day, Talat left his apartment intending to purchase a pair of gloves. Tehlirian approached him from the opposite direction, recognized him, crossed the street, closed in from behind, and shot him at close range in the nape of his neck outside of Hardenbergstrasse 27, on a busy street corner, causing instant death. The bullet went through his spinal cord and exited above Talat's left eye, having destroyed his brain; he fell down forward into a pool of blood. Tehlirian at first stood over the corpse but then after onlookers shouted, forgot his instructions and ran away. He threw away the 9×19mm Parabellum pistol that he used for the assassination and fled via Fasanenstrasse where he was apprehended by shop assistant Nikolaus Jessen. People in the crowd beat him severely; Tehlirian exclaimed in broken German something to the effect of, "It’s ok. I am a foreigner and he is a foreigner!" Shortly afterwards he told police, "I am not the murderer; he was."
Tehlirian was charged with murder, and the trial that followed become a public spectacle. Tehlirian's defense attorneys, somehow, managed to successfully turn the trial as an opportunity to indict Pasha for his involvement in the genocide.
The defense tried to forge a connection between Tehlirian and Talat through Tehlirian's mother by proving that her death was caused by Talat. Along with the enormity of Talat's crimes, the defense argument rested on Tehlirian's traumatized mental state, which could make him not liable for his actions under German law of temporary insanity
The trial lasted only a couple of days but had dozens of witnesses, and from reading the summary, it appears that the judge may have been pulling levers in Tehlirian's favor.
Tehlirian denied having a plan to kill Talat, but stated that two weeks before the killing, he had a vision: "the images from the massacre came in front of my eyes again and again. I saw the corpse of my mother. This corpse stood up and came up to me and said: 'You saw that Talât is here and you are totally indifferent? You are no longer my son!'" At this point, he stated, "I suddenly woke up and decided to kill that man." Following additional questions, he denied knowing that Talat was in Berlin and reiterated that he had no plan to kill the Ottoman official, appearing confused. The judge intervened after further probing from the prosecutor, stating that "there had been changes in his resolve".
The jury deliberated for an hour before unanimously finding Tehlirian not guilty.