They wanted to punish him for a “gross mistake”: the Haut-Rhin Assize Court delivers its verdict on Wednesday against four members of Seal-Evan's family, who died at the age of nine under the blows of his brother and his sister.
Tried since Monday “for willful violence against a 15-year-old minor resulting in death without the intention of giving it”, the two main defendants, a 26-year-old man and his 24-year-old sister, face twenty years of criminal imprisonment.
General Advocate Laura Duc requested 14 years in prison for the young man and six years in prison with a warrant for his sister.
She asked for four years in prison with a warrant for the mother of the victim, prosecuted for “complicity in voluntary violence” and three years suspended for the ex-girlfriend of the older brother, accused of “non-impediment to a crime”.
The big brother is the only one to appear detained, the three accused being under judicial supervision.
The facts occurred on Sunday, September 16, 2018, in the apartment of this family of Cameroonian origin, in Mulhouse.
The siblings are left to fend for themselves: the mother, as often, is absent. The two eldest and their two little brothers are present – Seal-Evan, the youngest, and his 11-year-old brother – as well as the oldest partner, who is pregnant.
At the end of the afternoon, on the pretext of a note in Seal-Evan's correspondence book, the blows begin to rain down, first with a belt, then a broomstick.
The correction session will last until midnight. The sister partly filmed and recorded it.
In a recording broadcast Tuesday at the hearing, the child is heard pleading “God, help me, God” and addressing his brother who hits him: “Protect me, you are the king”.
He eventually loses consciousness. The sister alerted the paramedics, who were unable to revive him when they arrived shortly after midnight.
The criminal nature of the death was not immediately identified, but “suspicious traces” on the body were led the hospital to alert the police, had indicated the prosecutor of the Republic of Mulhouse, Edwige Roux-Morizot.
The autopsy and further examinations showed that he was unconscious, even in a coma, probably several hours before the call for help.
He “would have died of suffocation by his own gastric contents” , “while he was unconscious”, according to Ms. Roux-Morizot. The blows were not in themselves fatal “but it was indeed as a result of these blows that the child died”, she added.
So many elements that had led to the arrest of the four relatives of Seal-Evan, struck by his two eldest “in the presence of his sister-in-law, and with a more distant presence of their own mother”, according to the prosecutor.< /p> “Relentlessness”
Heard Tuesday by the Assize Court, the two eldest partly acknowledged the facts, the young man denying having used a broomstick, yet attested to by his youngest brother.
The latter, heard behind closed doors because he was a minor, spoke of a “relentlessness” on Seal-Evan.
According to the teenager, in the family, belt shots were reserved for “big nonsense”, sometimes linked to school homework: this Sunday, the word in the notebook, likely to draw attention to a family who had already suffered a social survey, served as a trigger.
For the eldest, it was his mother, then “in party mode” in Paris, who told him on the phone to “manage the thing”. According to him, his mother practiced physical punishment: “We grew up in a place where hitting is normal”.
His sister also admitted to hitting, but not in a “voluntary” way. As for the ex-girlfriend, she explained that she “reacted badly (…) Instead of calling the emergency services, I stayed watching my boyfriend hit his little brother”.
The mother denied having asked the eldest to hit her youngest son, to the great displeasure of the President of the Court: “Nonsense!” Christine Schlumberger threw at her.
“You did not want that there is a control of the social services on your family and therefore on your income! The reality is that you asked your son to type” Seal-Evan, the magistrate got carried away.