Belgian mother who slit the throats of her five children is euthanised

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A Belgian woman, 56, who murdered her five children in the quintuple murder that rocked the country has been euthanised at her own request, 16 years to the day after their killing, her lawyer said Thursday.

Genevieve Lhermitte slit the throats of her son and four daughters aged three to 14 with a kitchen knife at the family home in the town of Nivelles on February 28, 2007 while their father was away.

She then tried to commit suicide by stabbing herself, but the attempt failed and she ended up calling the emergency services.

Lhermitte was sentenced to life in prison in 2008, before being moved to a psychiatric hospital in 2019.

In this file photo taken on December 8, 2008, Defendant Genevieve Lhermitte (R) arrives at the Nivelles courthouse for the first day her trial on charges of taking the lives of her five children, aged three to 14. – Now 56-years-old Lhermitte later admitted to killing on February 28, 2007

The 56-year-old’s lawyer Nicolas Cohen confirmed to AFP reports in local media that his client had died through euthanasia on the sixteenth anniversary of the killings on Tuesday.

Belgian law allows for people to chose to be euthanised if they are deemed to be suffering from ‘unbearable’ psychological, and not just physical, suffering that cannot be healed.

Her funeral took place on Wednesday, according to Belgian news site Sudinfo, which revealed her death.

Psychologist Emilie Maroit told the RTL-TVI channel that Lhermitte likely chose to die on February 28 in a ‘symbolic gesture in respect for her children’.

Children Yasmine, 14, Nora, 12, Myriam, 10, Mina, seven and Mehdi, three, were killed in the attack

‘It may also have been for her to finish what she started because basically she wanted to end her life when she killed them,’ Maroit said.

On the day of the murders, Lhermitte stole two knives from a supermarket before cooking a family lunch.She then locked the front door and began the killings, later telling a trial she felt ‘desperate and trapped’ at home with the children.

She told the court: ‘I gave [my husband] a son and killed him. I’ve lost all children through my own fault. They never deserved it.

‘I shall suffer to the end of my days – that is my punishment.’

Lhermitte carried out the killings while her husband Bouchaib Moqadem was visiting his parents in Morocco.

Lhermitte’s lawyers argued that their client, who had regularly seen a psychiatrist, was mentally disturbed and should not be sent to prison.

But the jury found her guilty of premeditated murder and sentenced her to life in jail after hearing conflicting medical expertise.

In 2010 Lhermitte filed a civil lawsuit demanding up to three million euros ($3.18 million) from a former psychiatrist alleging his ‘inaction’ had failed to prevent the murders, but she ended up abandoning the legal battle after ten years without success.

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Ola Alabi
Ola Moses is a certified writer, He writes technically and creatively. He is the CEO of WORDSWORTH, a house where writing is made easier for all. He is a content creator at EsB TV, since 2019. He is a young man that showcases professionalism in all that he does, he was announced as Child and Green Foundation Person of the Year 2018, one of his many lists of honours.

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