This story is about suicide. If you or someone you know is having suicidal thoughts, call the Suicide and Crisis Helpline at 988 or 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
Belgian woman sentenced to life in prison after being found guilty of murder in the first degree in the death of her five children 16 years ago, reportedly died on Tuesday after she decided to be euthanized.
Genevieve Lhermitte, 56, slit her children’s throats on February 25. December 28, 2007 at his home in St. Nivelles, Belgium.
At the time, her children were 3, 7, 10, 12 and 14 years old. Their father, Bouchaib Mokadem, was visiting the family in Morocco when they were killed.
Lhermitte attempted suicide after the murders, but failed and called 911 for help.
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Her lawyers argued during the trial that she was mentally ill In 2019, she was transferred to a psychiatric hospital.
According to BBC News, the decision to die by euthanasia is legal in Belgium if the person is capable and in “unbearable” physical and psychological pain that cannot be treated.
Nearly 3,000 people were euthanized in Belgium last year, with terminal cancer being the most common cause.
“It was this particular procedure that Mrs. Lhermitte followed when the various medical reports were collected,” her lawyer said of her decision.
Lhermitte died 16 years after she killed her children.
Psychologist Emily Marois told a local Belgian television station that the decision to die on February 28 was probably “a symbolic gesture of respect for her children.”
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“Perhaps she also should have finished what she started, because, in essence, she wanted to kill herself when she killed them,” he said, according to the BBC.