BERLIN, GERMANY - DECEMBER 20:  Rescue workers begin to remove the cab of the lorry the morning after it ploughed through a Christmas market on December 20, 2016 in Berlin, Germany. Several people have died while dozens have been injured as police investigate the attack at a market outside the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church on the Kurfuerstendamm and whether it is linked to a terrorist plot.  (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
Sean Gallup/Getty Images
BERLIN, GERMANY - DECEMBER 20: Rescue workers begin to remove the cab of the lorry the morning after it ploughed through a Christmas market on December 20, 2016 in Berlin, Germany. Several people have died while dozens have been injured as police investigate the attack at a market outside the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church on the Kurfuerstendamm and whether it is linked to a terrorist plot. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
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A policeman and firemen stand next to a truck on December 20, 2016 at the scene where it crashed into a Christmas market near the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gedaechtniskirche (Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church) in Berlin.
German police said they were treating as "a probable terrorist attack" the killing of 12 people when the speeding lorry cut a bloody swath through the packed Berlin Christmas market.
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A policeman and firemen stand next to a truck on December 20, 2016 at the scene where it crashed into a Christmas market near the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gedaechtniskirche (Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church) in Berlin. German police said they were treating as "a probable terrorist attack" the killing of 12 people when the speeding lorry cut a bloody swath through the packed Berlin Christmas market.
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Police patrol inside the Christmas market area and past the destroyed booths two days after an attack with a truck in front of the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gedaechtniskirche (Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church) in Berlin on December 21, 2016.
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Police patrol inside the Christmas market area and past the destroyed booths two days after an attack with a truck in front of the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gedaechtniskirche (Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church) in Berlin on December 21, 2016. German police on December 21, 2016 stepped up their hunt for the driver of a truck that ploughed through a Berlin Christmas market, in a deadly assault claimed by the Islamic State jihadist group.
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Federal prosecutor's office and the Federal Criminal Police Office ask for help with the reconnaissance to the attack on the Christmas market at the Berlin Memorial Church on December 19, 2016!

On December 19, 2016, a saddle truck type Scania, along with trailers with a Polish license plate, arrived at the entrance of the Christmas market at the Ged‰chtniskirche am Breitscheidplatz. The vehicle captured numerous people on the Christmas market and came to a halt after 60-80 meters on the Budapest road. According to a testimony, a person was removed from the vehicle shortly thereafter, and has since been fleeting.

The 24 year old Tunisian citizen Anis AMRI is urgently suspicious of this situation.
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Federal prosecutor's office and the Federal Criminal Police Office ask for help with the reconnaissance to the attack on the Christmas market at the Berlin Memorial Church on December 19, 2016! On December 19, 2016, a saddle truck type Scania, along with trailers with a Polish license plate, arrived at the entrance of the Christmas market at the Ged‰chtniskirche am Breitscheidplatz. The vehicle captured numerous people on the Christmas market and came to a halt after 60-80 meters on the Budapest road. According to a testimony, a person was removed from the vehicle shortly thereafter, and has since been fleeting. The 24 year old Tunisian citizen Anis AMRI is urgently suspicious of this situation.
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BERLIN, GERMANY - DECEMBER 20:  The Brandenburg Gate stands illuminated in the colors of the German flag the day before a truck drove into a crowded Christmas market in the city center on December 20, 2016 in Berlin, Germany. So far 12 people are confirmed dead and 45 injured. Authorities have confirmed they believe the incident was an attack and have arrested a Pakistani man who they believe was the driver of the truck and who had fled immediately after the attack. Among the dead are a Polish man who was found on the passenger seat of the truck. Police are investigating the possibility that the truck, which belongs to a Polish trucking company, was stolen yesterday morning.  (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
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BERLIN, GERMANY - DECEMBER 20: The Brandenburg Gate stands illuminated in the colors of the German flag the day before a truck drove into a crowded Christmas market in the city center on December 20, 2016 in Berlin, Germany. So far 12 people are confirmed dead and 45 injured. Authorities have confirmed they believe the incident was an attack and have arrested a Pakistani man who they believe was the driver of the truck and who had fled immediately after the attack. Among the dead are a Polish man who was found on the passenger seat of the truck. Police are investigating the possibility that the truck, which belongs to a Polish trucking company, was stolen yesterday morning. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
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An ambulance and rescue workers arrive to the area after a lorry truck ploughed through a Christmas market on December 19, 2016 in Berlin, Germany. Several people have died while dozens have been injured as police investigate the attack at a market outside the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church on the Kurfuerstendamm and whether it is linked to a terrorist plot.
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An ambulance and rescue workers arrive to the area after a lorry truck ploughed through a Christmas market on December 19, 2016 in Berlin, Germany. Several people have died while dozens have been injured as police investigate the attack at a market outside the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church on the Kurfuerstendamm and whether it is linked to a terrorist plot.
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Rescue forces stand in front of the truck that speed into a Christmas market in Berlin, on December 19, 2016 killing nine persons and injuring at least 50 people.
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Rescue forces stand in front of the truck that speed into a Christmas market in Berlin, on December 19, 2016 killing nine persons and injuring at least 50 people. Ambulances and police rushed to the scene after the driver drove up the pavement of the market in a central square popular with tourists less than a week before Christmas, in a scene reminiscent of the deadly truck attack in Nice.
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 / AFP PHOTO / Don EMMERT        (Photo credit should read DON EMMERT/AFP/Getty Images)
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Investigators inspect a truck following a shooting incident in New York on October 31, 2017. Several people were killed and numerous others injured in New York on Tuesday when a suspect plowed a vehicle into a bike and pedestrian path in Lower Manhattan, and struck another vehicle on Halloween, police said. A suspect exited the vehicle holding up fake guns, before being shot by police and taken into custody, officers said. The motive was not immediately apparent. / AFP PHOTO / Don EMMERT (Photo credit should read DON EMMERT/AFP/Getty Images)
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Story highlights

Berlin police say regular Polish driver was not at wheel during attack on market

Driver's boss says he wanted to leave early to buy Christmas gift for wife

Truck company owner says driver was uneasy about the area where he was due to unload

(CNN) —  

The slain driver of a truck that was used to kill 12 people at the Berlin market had asked to finish his duties early so he could buy a Christmas gift for his wife, according to the owner of the trucking company.

Berlin police say that the Polish driver was not at the wheel during the attack and German Interior Minister Thomas De Maiziere said that the man appeared to have been shot dead.

Speaking to CNN affiliate TVN24, truck company owner Ariel Zurawski described the Polish driver, who has not yet been identified, as a “good man.”

Zurawski says pictures shown to him by the police to help identify the victim were “very terrifying.”

Based on the picture he had seen, he believes the driver, who was 1.8 meters tall and 120kg (240 pounds), may have tried to fight off the assailants.

Zurawski said they had spoken on the phone earlier Monday when the driver had requested to finish his duties early but also spoke of the driver’s apparent unease. He had described the area where he was going to unload as “weird.”

’Truck was driven back and forth’

Zurawski said in the interview that the driver talked to his wife at 3 pm local time, but at 3:45 pm the truck’s GPS was showing that it was being driven back and forth with the engine being started and shut down again.

He said that in his opinion it looked like someone was learning how to drive the truck. According to Zurawski, it didn’t move again until 7:40 pm.

The company owner said that the truck had shown up in different parts of Berlin but knew that the driver – whose company nickname was “Inspector” – never wasted any time and always followed the rules.

He said he knew something terrible had happened to him when he saw the tragedy unfold in the market.