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Mum ‘slit her five kids’ throats’

Filed under: General — Vman @ 3:46 pm Tue 9th December 2008

By Philippe Siuberski in Nivelles, Belgium

December 09, 2008 11:05am

A WOMAN lured her five children upstairs one by one and slit their throats before trying to kill herself, a court has been told.

Belgian woman Genevieve Lhermitte, 42, is on trial for the murders of her four daughters and son, aged from three to 14.

Asked to identify herself and profession at the start of the trial, she said she was “a mother”.

Prosecutor Pierre Rans painted a nightmarish picture of the scene that met emergency services on February 28, 2007 at the former teacher’s home in Nivelles, central Belgium.

Ms Lhermitte was found sitting against a wall in the hall with a deep gash in her throat.

She tried to commit suicide after killing her children, she allegedly told an emergency worker.

Police discovered the children’s bodies in their beds with their throats slit and the floor and walls covered with blood.

The trial, expected to last about two weeks, will focus on what drove Ms Lhermitte to allegedly kill her children since she has confessed to their murders.

Seeing no solution to her problems and unable to imagine her children living without her, Ms Lhermitte heard a voice say to her on the day of the murders that “the machine has begun working”, she allegedly told investigators.

With her husband due to return any time from a trip to Morocco, she called her seven-year-old daughter Mina upstairs from watching television with her sisters and brother, the court was told.

Armed with a butcher’s knife, Ms Lhermitte comforted the girl as she laid her on the bed then strangled her and cut her throat, the court was told.

She then got the other four children to come upstairs one by one and killed them as well.

From the dock, Ms Lhermitte looked out stone-faced without her gaze falling on Bouchaib Moqadem, the father of her children, who sat in the first row next to family friend Michel Schaar.

Ms Lhermitte, who was in a deep depression at the time of the murders, allegedly told investigators she could no longer stand the presence of Mr Schaar, which she considered to be “intrusive”.

In a farewell letter left in a friend’s letterbox shortly before the murders, Ms Lhermitte allegedly said: “I have taken the decision to go very far away with my children forever.”

In the letter, she accused her husband of being deaf to her distress and accused Mr Schaar, on whom the family had depended financially for years, of wanting to run her household.

The trial continues.


  1. Having lived many years in Belgium (land of the best beer, chips AND waffles in the world BY FAR !), this interested me. It seemed that all the family lived WITH the strange Dr Schaar for 17 years, maybe something strange sexually has been going on, the woman (a French Belgian teacher) certainly had severe mental problems, but it is ongoing, more will be revealed. Initial questions tried to establish if the 2 men were homosexual (her husband was Morrocan), or if it was a big manage a trois, but no conclusion has yet been reached. The jury consists of 8 women and 4 men
    Mmm, i can feel EVEN myself looking at things, assuming by default that the woman was innocent, but maybe it is just my innate English sense of fair play

    Certainly some strange things have taken place in Belgium the last few years Michel Fourniret, mass serial killer who lured young women WITH HIS WIFE’S HELP and killed them. And Dutroux, who operated a paedophile murder ring that was thought to have included senior policians/policemen, hence a major reason for his non-capture for so many years. Despite HALF THE COUNTRY protesting at a “White Protest” no politician or policeman was ever charged.
    Although he was prisoner number 1 in the country, he escaped prison and was loose for several days.

    Comment by martin swash — Wed 10th December 2008 @ 10:34 am

  2. “The trial…will focus on what drove Ms Lhermitte to allegedly kill her children since she has confessed to their murders.”

    Whenever a woman commits a serious crime, society always looks to blame someone or something else. As Warren Farrell pointed out, violent female offenders are much more likely to be referred for psychiatric assessment and to be let off or given light sentences.

    This woman has pleaded guilty and there seems no need for a 2-week trial at all, but people want to find someone or something else to blame other than this woman herself. And of course that someone else will be a male or males. For male offenders, they are generally held responsible in their own right and their offending attributed to badness or bad behaviour.

    Comment by Hans Laven — Wed 10th December 2008 @ 6:42 pm

  3. I agree. The reasons are irrelevant. The only relevant thing left is how much of a threat to the rest of society she is. But as you say there is a different system of justice for female child abusers.

    Comment by Dave — Wed 10th December 2008 @ 7:04 pm

  4. I agree, but i found even myself making excuses for her, why do we do that ?

    Comment by Perseus — Wed 10th December 2008 @ 10:25 pm

  5. Conditioning.

    Comment by Dave — Thu 11th December 2008 @ 11:34 am

  6. Perseus,
    You do that for the same reason you leapt to Julie’s defense on another thread.

    Comment by Skeptik — Thu 11th December 2008 @ 11:57 am

  7. iam a 15 yr old girl and when i read that today i cried my eyes out for hours how culd a mother do such a thing to her kids . its no one elses fault but her own she was the one with the knife!!! and she was the one that lured them to her room !!!and she was the one that slit there throats !!! No one els is to blame for her actions but herself ? where the fuck was the child protection or social workers ? culd they not spot her mental health ? that woman shuld be prisoned for life no question about it lock her up and throw away the fucking key !!!

    Comment by rachel — Thu 11th December 2008 @ 1:10 pm

  8. Chivalry.

    Actually, it may be that the approaches taken towards female offenders is the better one. Many men who offend seriously also did so out of difficult situations that “drove” them to offend. The problem is that men are seldom shown understanding for their behaviour the way women are. One strength of our crimimal justice system is that sentencing Courts can take circumstances into account and adjust sentences accordingly. But feminists bray as loudly for maximum retribution/minimum understanding towards men as they do for maximum understanding/minimal punishment for women.

    Comment by Hans Laven — Thu 11th December 2008 @ 1:19 pm

  9. the justice system is fucking down right disgracfull realy what happen to everyone being treated right !! no exceptions for woman even tho iam a woman i wuld want to be treated the exact same as men if i done something wrong because then i know that i was treated the same no different or no better just fair !! she commited an unforgiveable horrific crime and she should pay with her life !!! she ruined the true meaning of being a mother !!! she just is a disgrace to women all round this world !!!

    Comment by rachel — Thu 11th December 2008 @ 1:36 pm

  10. But it is not over yet, something really bizarre is going to turn up in the next couple of days , i am sure. It’s something to do with that Doctor guy

    Comment by Perseus — Thu 11th December 2008 @ 2:14 pm

  11. Rachel, you summed it up well.
    I don’t want to alarm you further but this has happened before around the world.
    Part of the problem is that no one thinks a mother could do this so no one steps in to protect the children. The father was protecting them but he was away on a trip at the time.

    I think it’s important to be aware it happens, if we want to prevent it happening again.

    I am just sorry you read about it from me.

    Comment by Dave — Thu 11th December 2008 @ 2:17 pm

  12. Natural fathers are BY FAR the least likely to kill their own kids, Rachael.
    When they do, it is normally after hearing about the complete injustice of the family courts kids’ custody judgements.

    Mentally unhinged mothers are the most likely infanticide perpertrators followed by step fathers (Nia Glassie , Baby P etc etc

    Dave, i think Social Workers normally know about potential problem families, but do miss many

    Comment by Perseus — Thu 11th December 2008 @ 2:29 pm

  13. More news from belgium, a mother sells her children to fund cosmetic surgery, could you ever imagine a father selling his kids to buy some tools or beer ?

    Comment by martin.swash — Sun 14th December 2008 @ 10:28 pm

  14. Notice in that story how there is no mention of the father’s reproductive or parental rights.
    How is this woman’s actions any different to the countless women in the western world who have children they don’t want as a life style choice on welfare and child support?
    The difference is that the babies that were sold are better off being raised by someone that wants them.
    I’m not condoning it. I’m just saying that selling babies to have cosmetic surgery is on a par with they way a significant number of women behave in NZ and the western world. In other words places where they have schemes such as the DPB.

    Comment by Dave — Mon 15th December 2008 @ 2:36 pm

  15. I was married to a Moroccan man for 21 yrs! I divorced him because he was always going to Morocco to visit his family. Was only supposed to be for 2 weeks at a time but he stayed 2-3months, leaving me with no money to keep our 3 children. This part of this story I understand. I became very lonley and always 2nd to my ex husbands family. Suffered periods of depression and felt abandoned. I did not kill my children! I divorced my husband and went on to enjoy holidays with my kids, the likes of which we never had when married to my ex I raised my kids alone and they entered universities and became sucessful individuals in their own right. They have little or no contact with their father, who remarried and now lives in Morocco. Reading this story, made me revisit my past feelings. Is it Muslim men or just Moroccan men, that are very selfish and self centred? I dont know, but they dont make the best husbands and thoughtfulness is only for themselves.

    Comment by maria benot — Thu 28th August 2014 @ 9:38 pm

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