The trial of Jonathann Daval, who now admits having “wanted” to kill his wife Alexia, enters its home stretch on Friday with a final questioning of the accused and the first pleadings but the verdict will undoubtedly be postponed to Saturday.
Long heard on Thursday on the facts, Jonathann Daval, 36, will this time be questioned about his personality.
The court must also proceed to the hearing of several witnesses, among which Martine Henry, the mother of Jonathann, already heard briefly on the first day of the trial, Monday.
The jurors should also watch the dramatic confrontation between Jonathann and Alexia’s mother, Isabelle Fouillot: in December 2018, when the thirty-something supported the thesis of a family conspiracy, accusing his brother-in-law of having killed Alexia, Ms. Fouillot had gotten another confession out of Jonathann.
– Verdict delayed –
The trial, which was to end on Friday, was significantly delayed but the pleadings of the civil parties should still take place “at the end of the afternoon”, estimated one of their lawyers, Me Gilles-Jean Portejoie.
Given the accumulated delay, the verdict should be postponed to Saturday, however estimated Mes Portejoie and Randall Schwerdorffer.
The latter, who defends the accused, believes that the jurors should make their deliberation “Saturday at the end of the day”, while for the former president of Clermont-Ferrand, he could intervene “in the night from Saturday to Sunday”.
Thursday saw a new twist, one more in a very emotionally dense trial: after a first interrogation aborted Wednesday evening due to vagal discomfort, Jonathann Daval confessed the murderous intention that animated him when he lashed out at Alexia.
He who maintained until then to have simply wanted to “silence her”, ended up acknowledging that he had indeed “wanted to kill her” during a violent argument.
“I gave him death, yes, when you strangle someone like that, it’s to kill”, he confessed in icy silence, his voice choked with emotion, before detailing the night of the murder.
– “Tensions” –
Confessions which will inevitably have consequences on the defense pleadings: his lawyers, who had reserved before the trial the possibility of pleading the willful violence which resulted in death without intention of giving it, less severely repressed, will renounce it.
“We are going to plead voluntary manslaughter”, announced Thursday evening Me Schwerdorffer while his client who appears for homicide on spouse, faces life imprisonment.
Also in charge of his defense, Me Samuel Estève welcomed the testimonies of “friends” of the couple who testified late Thursday evening at the bar: they “confirmed in every way what Jonathann explained on his relationship with ( Alexia) in the last days, that is to say when the couple knew important tensions “.
“We are now very far from the perfect couple without history, there were tensions”, he noted, “everything Jonathann said (…) has been confirmed by witnesses”.
The Daval couple had been disintegrating for several years and the two spouses were struggling with important intimate problems: Jonathann’s erection problems and Alexia’s unfulfilled desire for a child.
– Frustrated –
In contrast, the civil parties remained hungry even if Me Caty Richard wanted to see “a step forward” when the accused declared “twice: + yes I wanted to kill her, yes necessarily j wanted to kill her + “.
His colleague, Me Portejoie, was less positive: “we haven’t learned much, we’re going in circles.” Friday, “it will be necessary to speak directly to Jonathann Daval”, he launched to his clients, the parents of Alexia, Isabelle and Jean-Pierre Fouillot.
At the bar, they had already tried to challenge their former son-in-law on Wednesday, but the president of the Assize Court, Matthieu Husson, cut short, believing that the time had not yet come for such a confrontation.
Ms. Fouillot now hopes to “talk to her” even if “it looks like we’re talking to a wall”. “It looks like he is elsewhere, that he is not in his trial. It is closed, closed, closed!”, She lamented.