Belgian mother slits throats of her five children and 16 years later chooses to die by euthanasia
16 years to the day she murdered her five children, a Belgian woman has been euthanised at her own request. On February 28th, 2007, the woman Genevieve Lhermitte slit the throats of her four daughters and one son. Following the mass murder, the woman then tried to take her own life by stabbing herself. However, her suicide attempt failed, and she ended up calling for emergency services. The brutal case shocked the country.
As per AFP, soon after the murders, in 2008, Lhermitte was sentenced to life in prison. Ten years later, in 2019, she was moved to a psychiatric hospital.
During the trial, her lawyers had argued that the mother of five was mentally disturbed and should not be sent to prison. However, the jury found her guilty of premeditated murder and sentenced her to life in jail.
Reportedly, Lhermitte, who carried out the quintuple murder while her husband had gone out, was seeking psychiatrist care even before the shocking incident.
Lhermitte's lawyer, Nicolas Cohen, confirmed his client's death via euthanasia. Reportedly, she availed it under the country's laws that allow people to choose euthanasia if they are deemed to be suffering from "unbearable" physical or psychological suffering.
For an individual to choose euthanasia, they must be conscious of their decision and be able to express their wish in a consistent, reasonable manner.
"It is this specific procedure that Mrs Lhermitte followed, with the various medical opinions having been collected," said her lawyer.
Speaking to RTL-TVI channel, psychologist Emilie Maroit said that Lhermitte might have chosen the 16th anniversary of her children's murder as a "symbolic gesture in respect" for them.