This is the first time they speak. Eric and Elodie ( the first names have been changed ) a couple from Pont-de-Beauvoisin (Isère), are convinced that the night of the kidnapping and murder of the little Maëlys, their daughter Émilie ( the first name has been changed ), 3 years and a half, could have been the prey of Nordahl Lelandais. "If we speak today, it is thinking of Maëlys parents. And to show that we have to deal with a predator who that night was probably hunting, "says Eric.
On August 26, 2017 in the afternoon, Élodie celebrates her birthday. With her companion Eric, she lives in a house with a small garden in the center of Pont-de-Beauvoisin. A little over a kilometer from the village hall where Maëlys and his parents will participate in the evening at a wedding party. "For my birthday, we had invited family members and close friends. There were several children. In the afternoon, we had a barbecue in the garden. It was the party, "recalls Elodie.
"Your daughter is very pretty, kind and polite"
Around 17 hours, Eric decides to buy bottles of alcohol with his brother-in-law. "On the car park right next to the house, we came across Nordahl Lelandais who was in his Audi A3. He was waiting, phoning with his cell phone. I had never seen him. But Elodie's brother knew him a little. He greeted him. I then offered to come and have a drink with us. But he declined the invitation, "recalls Eric. Lelandais however remains nearby.
In the early evening, the former soldier arrives at the village hall of Pont-de-Beauvoisin where we celebrate a wedding. He was invited by the groom. But oddly, around 22 hours, Nordahl Lelandais returns to the birthday of Elodie. And his attitude intrigues. "He was very cold. He smoked cigarette on cigarette, jaw clenched, gaze fixed. Without a smile, even though he was at a party. He was weird. He created a malaise, "says Eric. But there is even more worrying.
"While he is not supposed to know my daughter, he went to me asking me if I was Emily's mom," says Elodie. "I told him yes. He then told me, "your daughter is very pretty, kind and polite". I then felt that there was something unclear. It's my maternal instinct that spoke. I did not understand why he told me that my daughter was kind and polite while at that time, Emily was rather wild with people and did not say hello.
"He thought he was taking advantage of the parents' inattention"
From there, I was very vigilant. I did not leave my daughter's eyes. And I was looking at Nordahl Lelandais. He probably noticed it. And after a while, he finally left the evening, "recalls Elodie. "Looking back, I think he was in predatory mode. He was looking for prey. And her prey, it could have been our daughter. I have this conviction, "says Eric. "At parties like that, everyone was a little drunk. He thought he was taking advantage of the parents' inattention. It's scary, "explains Émilie's father.
In the night, around 3 o'clock in the morning, Nordahl Lelandais removes the little Maëlys at the village hall of Pont-de-Beauvoisin. And kill her. Accidentally, he says. When she learns of the death of Maëlys, Elodie is upset. "It could have been my daughter's esteem today. It's very hard for a mom to think about that kind of thing. I have nightmares. Émilie was only three and a half years old in 2017. But Lelandais sexually assaulted one of her 4-year-old grandchildren. "
Nordahl Lelandais consulted sites of child pornography. Was he trying to realize certain fantasies? Maëlys' parents are convinced that their daughter has been raped. And that Lelandais has premeditated his actions. What denies the interested party. Elodie went to tell the gendarmes this evening August 26, 2017. But she remains traumatized. "Every time we see the picture of Lelandais appear on TV, I think back to this evening. And I have a thought for Maëlys who is in our heart.
In his next book, "Either I win or I learn" Plon editions will be released Thursday, master Alain Jakubowicz, lawyer Nordahl Lelandais, speaks about his client. "Nordahl Lelandais seemed to me like a kind of lost man, fruit of our time and of our society. Apart from his passion for dogs and motorcycles, nothing seemed to interest him. At 34, he had pretty much failed everything.
The lawyer mentions the sexuality of Lelandais with adults: "I spoke with him about this sexual appetite that seemed insatiable. According to him, it was an occupation like any other. He went to these meetings as some go fishing or football. Regarding the reconstruction of the murder of Maëlys, Master Jakubowicz writes: "The little girl was replaced by a large doll in rag. I watched Nordahl Lelandais. He had to reproduce as faithfully as possible the gestures that had been his in this vehicle. What we witnessed was taken aback by all who were present. For my part, I did not imagine that it was possible to carry blows of such violence in the position in which he was. I was paralyzed. I could not help but think of the parents of the girl who was a few meters away from me.
The lawyer also mentions the upcoming trial: "He has no intention of posing as" crazy ". Nevertheless, given the nature of the charges against him, the psychological and psychiatric dimension will be extremely important during the proceedings of the Assize Court. "