The western German city of Saarbruecken found itself under lockdown for parts of Sunday amid reports of an armed stand-off, but the state of emergency was quickly lifted after the alleged perpetrator was found asleep in a restaurant cellar.
Police overpowered the mentally disturbed man and took him to hospital.
Initial reports that a man had barricaded himself inside the restaurant had prompted a major police action. Police said he had entered the restaurant Sunday when it was still closed and ordered employees out. He was wearing blood-stained clothing at the time.
"We got the impression from witnesses that he had a weapon. We were not sure if there were other people in the restaurant," said a police spokesman.
Instead, he turned out to be slightly injured and unarmed. Police said the 43-year-old man was a person with whom the department had had contact in the past and that he worked at the restaurant.
The man did not make any demands or threaten anyone, said police, who said the incident was probably sparked by personal problems.