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Monday, March 30, 2009

Crucifix in a death hand

What follows is a translation of an article in originally published on March 30 in Tolouse's Dêpeche du Midi by Francine Depeyre and Guillaume Atchouel. It is the latest in a series that LoS will translate posthaste.

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Crime in Lourdes : "Elisabeth often spoke of satanism."

She killed her mother with blows from a crucifix and then she died in the hospital. The funeral of the two women will be performed this morning. Her brother speaks.

The funeral of Thérèse D., 81, and her daughter Elisabeth F., 34, , are to be performed today at 10:30 in the church of the Sacré-Coeur in Lourdes. The first died tragically during the night last Monday, killed by blows from a crucifix from her daughter with whom she shared a small apartment in the Marial City on the rue de l’église. The second died mysteriously in her room at a psychiatric hospital in Lannemezan where she had just been interned after commiting this terrible act. An autopsy was performed at the end of last week to determine the exact circumstances of her death. For the moment the results of this exam have not been made public.

The family of the two women, natives of the department of Aube, will not all attend the funerals. For more than twenty years harmony has not reigned in this family, it would seem, and “relations were tense” say relatives. After separating from her husband, Thérèse and Élisabeth decided to install themselves in Lourdes after brief stints in Paris and the Aveyron. Even if he had not seen them for several years and despite everything, the eldest son Claude stayed in telephone contact with his mother and sister.

She was fascinated by withcraft

Regarding Élisabeth, it was common knowledge among her entire family that “she was psychologically fragile and that her life was punctuated by several psychiatric episodes.” According to Claude "She was interested for a long time in Satanism and witchcraft. It fascinated her and she often spoke about it.” Soon after killing her mother she explained to a policeman that she had seen in a dream she herself was evil and thus what she had to do. Was the murder of her mother a consequence of the her fascination for the devil on her unwell mind? The use of a crucifix to accomplish her crime leads to this conclusion even if there may no way of ever knowing for certain. There remains the fact that her worried mother recently confided to a member of the Red Cross of Lourdes that “her mental state was aggravated.” She was no less a believer than her mother and very pious. She regularly confided to a priest in Lourdes. The various religious objects cluttering their apartment attests as much to her great devotion.

The two women chose to set themselves up in Lourdes to fully live their faith and to regularly visit the Massabielle grotto to pray.

Élisabeth often repeated that she feared being unable to pay for a burial plot for her mother if she died. It is true that her mother lived with nothing but 7OO euros pension a month. However, her mother had purchased funeral insurance in order to be rid of this financial and administrative rigamarole. Did she know? Or had she hidden this fact?

United in their world they consequently pursued their emotional deadlock into death.

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Here are links to earlier articles soon to be translated:

Lannemezan. La tueuse au crucifix retrouvée morte (Lannemezan. The crucifix killer found dead) 28 March

Lourdes. « Les délires mystiques, ça arrive vite » (Lourdes. "The mystical ravings come quickly") 26 March

Lourdes. Elle tue sa mère à coups de crucifix (Lourdes. She beat her mother to death with a crucifix)

1 comment:

  1. This is a gripping tale, Daurade! Looking forward to the next installment!

    ReplyDelete

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