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  1. #1
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    France - Mother & four children slain, buried in Nantes garden, 5 April 2011

    At first, it seemed like a bizarre case of a middle-class family who packed up their home and fled to another continent for a new life. Neighbours of the Dupont de Ligonnès and their four children called the police when they noticed the family home in the north-western city of Nantes seemed unusually deserted. The children's school had been notified of a "sudden job transfer" to Australia, the family's wardrobes had been emptied and the letter-box was taped-up with a note "return all mail to sender".

    But this week when police looked closer at the townhouse – and the suspicious building work on the patio – they found a severed human leg buried in the garden. Further digs revealed a one-legged corpse, and four others:

    Much more here
    England's dancing days are done...

  2. #2
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    And here's Daily Mail's take on the horrific French garden:

    Police hunt for 'devout Catholic' businessman after bodies of
    his wife, four children and two pet dogs found in freshly-dug grave
    ---
    Frenchman Xavier Dupont de Ligonnes, 50, is feared to have murdered all five members of his family at their home in Nantes, as well as the family's two pet Labrador dogs.

    His abandoned car was found some 400 miles away in the south of France in a town where he is also thought to have made a cash withdrawal.
    ---
    'Family friends had said the father claimed to be a secret agent who was leaving as part of a witness protection programme.'
    ---
    Much more, and with many pictures, at link above.

  3. #3
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    One of those chilling little details, from badhorsie's Guardian link above:

    ....and in the dishwasher were six plates and sets of cutlery from their last meal.

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    France launches international hunt for murder suspect (AFP)

    "I saw him firing his rifle with a silencer once," [shooting coach Giles] Herault said, before adding grimly, referring to the murders, "Anyway, to do what was done, no training was needed."
    http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp...d8b3d59307.901

  5. #5
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    The Guardian article was worded so weirdly.
    The investigation is complicated by the bizarre and contradictory messages seemingly left by the family.
    Complicated? I'd say the father giving contradictory information about his family disappearing simplifies the investigation.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by wfgodot View Post
    France launches international hunt for murder suspect (AFP)



    http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp...d8b3d59307.901
    What an exceptionally beautiful family! I hate these family annihilators -- notice they don't kill themselves. I bet he'll be caught soon.

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    Quote Originally Posted by STEADFAST View Post
    The Guardian article was worded so weirdly. Complicated? I'd say the father giving contradictory information about his family disappearing simplifies the investigation.
    I think the Guardian chose an awkward way to introduce the awkward idea that the mother may have been complicit in some of the secrecy (though not the deaths):

    Europe 1 radio reported that [Agnès Dupont de Ligonnès] had told a friend: "Pray for me, I'm going to need it."

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011...er?INTCMP=SRCH
    and
    Nantes prosecutor Xavier Ronsin said: 'Messages of a rambling and contradictory nature had been left by the couple.

    'The couple said they were taking their two youngest children out of school and moving to Australia full-time.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...dug-grave.html
    Rest in peace, may they all.

  8. #8
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    Shooting 5 people, mostly adults... in the same house... one after another. Did he maybe march them separately into one room at gunpoint and tie them up then go get another? Doesn't seem like he could shoot too many before the others could escape.... Or... was there more than one shooter or at least an accomplice?

    I'm probably just being dense on this one. Help me out here.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by tapu View Post
    Shooting 5 people, mostly adults... in the same house... one after another. Did he maybe march them separately into one room at gunpoint and tie them up then go get another? Doesn't seem like he could shoot too many before the others could escape.... Or... was there more than one shooter or at least an accomplice?

    I'm probably just being dense on this one. Help me out here.
    Wife Agnes 49, daughter Anne, 16, and three sons were apparently shot several times in the head while asleep, around April 3 or 4, and tests are under way to see if they were drugged first.

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp...d8b3d59307.901
    What bugs me is the severed leg.
    But this week when police looked closer at the townhouse – and the suspicious building work on the patio – they found a severed human leg buried in the garden. Further digs revealed a one-legged corpse, and four others

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011...er?INTCMP=SRCH

  10. #10
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    Ah. Read at the first two links, missed the googly one. Thank you, wuff-gah.


    The severed leg.... He could have planned to dismember and dispose of differently, but once he started, well, it would be quite the job to dismember 5 adults.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by tapu View Post
    Shooting 5 people, mostly adults... in the same house... one after another. Did he maybe march them separately into one room at gunpoint and tie them up then go get another? Doesn't seem like he could shoot too many before the others could escape.... Or... was there more than one shooter or at least an accomplice?

    I'm probably just being dense on this one. Help me out here.
    One of those 3 articles below had a quote from a worker at a shooting range saying that the dad asked him about silencers and also saying he had seen the dad with a silencer. They were shot while they were asleep, it looks like.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by wfgodot View Post
    I think the Guardian chose an awkward way to introduce the awkward idea that the mother may have been complicit in some of the secrecy (though not the deaths):


    and


    Rest in peace, may they all.
    But the other articles put all the messages about the family leaving the area as being from the dad. When the mom asked her friend to pray for her, it really doesn't indicate anything except things were really bad at home. Just annoyed me how the Guardian acted like this was such a perplexing mystery. Maybe they should look in their archives for "Entwistle."

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    Quote Originally Posted by STEADFAST View Post
    But the other articles put all the messages about the family leaving the area as being from the dad. When the mom asked her friend to pray for her, it really doesn't indicate anything except things were really bad at home. Just annoyed me how the Guardian acted like this was such a perplexing mystery. Maybe they should look in their archives for "Entwistle."
    The Sunday Mail and the Telegraph articles both quote this snippet:

    Mantes prosecutor Xavier Ronsin said: “Messages of a rambling and contradictory nature had been left by the couple.

    “The couple said they were taking their two youngest children out of school and moving to Australian full time.” http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worl...-children.html
    It's true that the more bizarre pronouncements are attributed to the father only, as here, from The Sun:
    Local prosecutor Xavier Ronsin confirmed: "Friends said the father claimed to be a secret agent who was leaving as part of a witness protection programme."
    http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage...he-garden.html
    But I do wonder if the actions of the wife and mother, in perhaps "going along" with certain things, did enable somewhat the madness of the husband and father - perhaps he duped her into the "going to Australia" notion, and she thought all would be well.

    I am reminded, somewhat, of the John List family murders - both of the men were devout Christians - List a Lutheran, Dupont de Ligonnès a Catholic; both killed every family member living with him. It would not surprise me at all if Dupont de Ligonnès were acting from a religious mania, as List did. We shall see.

  14. #14
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    The List murders popped into my head immediately, too.

    Interesting that you characterize both sets of murders as stemming from religious mania. I can see that angle. Both men had lost financial control, and were deeply indoctrinated and committed to religious characterizations of the Father as provider and protector.

    A question that always arises around patriarchal familicide is "Why did he think he had to take his whole family with him?" This gives a peek into that mindset. I don't want to set anything off here--really, really I don't--but are there any instances of familicide in the Old Testament?

    upon edit: Just googled that and no biblical refs popped up; however, I did see it noted that some Christian familicidal fathers have noted their faith in the after-life as a reason for viewing their acts as sanctioned (e.g., Christian Longo, and I think List himself). I don't know though.... I can see that more as deflection from their deeper need to avoid shame.
    Last edited by tapu; 04-24-2011 at 09:52 AM.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by tapu View Post
    The List murders popped into my head immediately, too.

    Interesting that you characterize both sets of murders as stemming from religious mania. I can see that angle. Both men had lost financial control, and were deeply indoctrinated and committed to religious characterizations of the Father as provider and protector.

    A question that always arises around patriarchal familicide is "Why did he think he had to take his whole family with him?" This gives a peek into that mindset. I don't want to set anything off here--really, really I don't--but are there any instances of familicide in the Old Testament?

    upon edit: Just googled that and no biblical refs popped up; however, I did see it noted that some Christian familicidal fathers have noted their faith in the after-life as a reason for viewing their acts as sanctioned (e.g., Christian Longo, and I think List himself). I don't know though.... I can see that more as deflection from their deeper need to avoid shame.
    Yes, me too on the googling around, and yes, List alleged he'd not killed himself along with the family on the promise of "getting together with the family again in heaven" notion - this from a guy who shot his oldest son TEN TIMES. The Old Testament God did command Abraham to kill his son Isaac, something I remember less from my Lutheran catechizing than I do from Mr Bobby Dylan:

    Oh God said to Abraham, “Kill me a son”
    Abe says, “Man, you must be puttin’ me on”
    God say, “No.” Abe say, “What?”
    God say, “You can do what you want Abe, but
    The next time you see me comin’ you better run”
    Well Abe says, “Where do you want this killin’ done?”
    God says, “Out on Highway 61”

    Ah - love that song. But, really, familicide in the Old Testament would have been a drop in a bloody bucket; here's a list of OT God's going over the top and slaying anyone who so much as looked at Him cross-eyed: Old Testament Atrocities.

    I do believe John List killed his family for his stated reason; yes, he had money problems too, but I doubt he could have led such an apparently conscience-free existence for almost two decades of freedom were he not mentally (and dementedly) "right with the Lord." The jury's out on M. Dupont de Ligonnès's reasoning for his (apparent) rash deed.

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