The hearing before the Bas-Rhin Assize Court will resume at 9 a.m. The pleadings of the civil parties will begin in the middle of the morning, before the requisitions of the Advocate General and the pleadings of the defense in the afternoon.
On Tuesday, Jean-Marc Reiser, 61, will have the floor one last time before the verdict. Judged as a recidivism, he faces life imprisonment with a 22-year security sentence.
Despite his arrest a week after the disappearance of Sophie Le Tan on September 7, 2018, the day of her 20th birthday, the man, already convicted in particular of rape, took more than two years to admit having killed the student.
According to him, he had drunk a lot the day before, met her at a bus stop downstairs, remembering then having fixed an appointment to show her apartment. He goes up with her, takes her hand, wants to kiss her on the cheek. She pushes him away, insults him and he is plunged into an uncontrollable “state of fury”. His fists and his feet are unleashed on the young woman, she falls heavily and no longer reacts.
– “It haunts me” –
Then “I stripped her to dismember her” with a hacksaw, he explained on Friday. First the legs then the head so that it fits in the suitcases he has at home.
The skeleton of Sophie Le Tan was found only partly, completely by chance, in a forest in the Vosges in October 2019.
“The fact of having killed a young girl who could have been my daughter, of having dismembered her body, has haunted me since that day and it will haunt me until the end of my life”, affirmed Jean-Marc Reiser during his interrogation on Friday.
Regrets, followed by a request for forgiveness, of which the very tried family of Sophie Le Tan will dispute the sincerity.
Beyond the real causes of death that the autopsy could not determine, the question of the premeditation of this homicide is at the heart of the trial.
Jean-Marc Reiser claims to have “lost the pedals” when the young woman pushed him away, but that he “never wanted what happened”. However, he is on trial for murder and therefore for having prepared his act, which, according to the prosecution, demonstrates the fictitious real estate advertisements for students and his multiple telephone lines with false identities.
“Before killing her, what did he do? Only he knows. He hadn’t chosen Sophie by chance, she was his prey. He had prepared for Sophie’s arrival, he had chosen her because “She was a young student of Asian origin”, persisted Friday Me Gérard Welzer, one of the two lawyers of the Le Tan family.
– “Mastery, control, coldness” –
The mother of the student, who had collapsed in the first minutes of the trial last Monday, and her sister only managed to come into the courtroom long enough to testify to their pain.
In support of the thesis of premeditation, the lawyers for the civil parties tried on several occasions to raise, during the proceedings, the specter of Françoise Hohmann, a young and pretty sales representative who disappeared in 1987 after ringing the doorbell of Jean-Marc Reiser. He was acquitted for lack of evidence in 2001 in this case. Françoise Hohmann’s mother is present every day at the trial.
“He has been explaining for more than a year now that he did not want Sophie Le Tan to die,” insisted one of his lawyers, Me Francis Welzer, assuring that the tears shed on Friday by the accused ” expressed sincere feelings”.
Monday’s hearing will begin with the report of a psychiatric expert to provide jurors with keys to the functioning of the man who has lost his imposing stature of yesteryear.
“We are in control, control, detachment, coldness”, has already warned a psychologist.
“I don’t think I’m a pervert in the sadistic sense,” Jean-Marc Reiser defended himself on Friday.