He answers in great detail but “doesn’t explain” “barbarism”. In a Paris region court, a 70-year-old retiree gave a lengthy account on Wednesday of the murder of his companion, whose body was found cut or charred in wood in 2017.
On August 31, 2017, pieces of burnt bodies were discovered on a pedestrian road in Verneuil, about forty kilometers west of Paris.
It will take investigators nearly two years to identify them. In May 2019: The victim is a 67-year-old woman, who was reported missing by her companion on October 16, 2017.
On the day of the crime, she had “entered the stage of delirium”, says the accused, and would have tried to strangle him during a “fight”. He says he then “grabbed his neck” in return.
“Then I couldn’t feel his breath anymore (…) I had a moment of stupor. I didn’t call Samoa. I didn’t make first aid gestures.”
The chief asks, “Have you thought about calling the police?”
“I made the choice. I could not afford to lose the respect of my family. I made the choice, I made the wrong choice. (…) the choice to hide my companion’s body “, Philippe Marchand repeats.
The accused explained that he used a knife and a saw to cut up the victim’s body, “a horrific process that lasted nearly four hours,” he said.
Philippe Marchand sighs and says his “regret”. “It shocked me a lot what you did. I’ve never been violent, I’ve always been respectful, especially towards women. I can’t explain this barbarism.”
In a black jacket in the trunk, his hand holding the microphone, the former taxi driver recounted at length the romantic relationship he had had since the end of 2015 with this “nice” and “elegant” woman, with whom he had “fallen”. Magic on the spot”, after the liberal evening during which he met her.
They moved in together a few months later. “It was an idyll for the first few weeks, and then it quickly deteriorated because of her behavior,” explains the accuser, who describes him as “very jealous” and suffering from “hysterical figure disorders.”
“Hysterical? No. I always thought she was depressed,” the victim’s son said in the morning, after being questioned about the term by the court.
The sexual man has suffered many times from “recurring depression,” according to one expert.
On Monday, a policewoman at the pub said that the accused, after reporting the disappearance of his companion, called his service several times to inquire about continuing the investigation.
Mr. Marchand also admitted that he sent text messages from the victim’s phone to himself and his family members after his death.
It is also suspected that the pensioner used the victim’s bank accounts for more than a year, from which more than 28,000 euros were deducted.
On Monday, a friend of the accused who had seen him “60 years ago” described a man he had loved since his retirement, “changing women and having extramarital affairs.” He added that at the time of his arrest he was “surprised and appalled by the facts.”
According to the investigation, Philippe Marchand has been in a relationship with another woman since July 2016. He described himself several times as “in love” with the victim, and also made it clear that she wanted to “catch him.”
A verdict is expected on Friday.