Jonathann Daval tells how he killed Alexia and set his wife’s body on fire

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On the fourth day of his trial, for the murder of his wife Alexia, Jonathann Daval admitted having wanted to kill his wife. A “strangulation to keep her silent”. In the morning, the experts detailed the personality of Jonathann Daval.

Jonathann Daval, who maintained until now not to have wanted to kill his wife Alexia, admitted Thursday before the assizes of Haute-Saône to have wanted to “kill” him, at the resumption of his interrogation interrupted by unease the day before in the evening.

– “Anyway, I gave him death, yes, when you strangle someone like that it is to kill”, he replied to the president of the court Matthieu Husson.

– “So it is death that you wanted?”, Insisted the president.

– “Yeah,” said the accused.

His lawyers had reserved before the trial the possibility of pleading the willful violence leading to death without intention of giving it, less severely punished than the count of murder on a spouse for which he has been tried since Monday, punishable by life imprisonment .
But the statements of their client seem to close the door to this possibility since Jonathann Daval now recognizes the murder of his wife.

During this argument with Alexia, it is “the anger of all these years which has emerged (…) Hence the strangulation for her to be silent”, he said. “Yes, I did, although still, I find it hard to admit it.”

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“I made pressure cooker, I overflowed”.

According to him, Alexia had bitten him, triggering her rage: “The bite, that put me out of myself (…) I made pressure cooker, I overflowed”. In icy silence, he continued the story of the murder: “I hit her head twice against the wall before hitting her. Before I dared not admit that I had done that …”

“The blows were quick and it started on the strangulation”, he continued, “I grabbed her by the neck, I squeezed”. “I squeezed (…) When I felt that she was sagging, I released,” he added, assuring that he had “never fought” before or never had punched “. He then carried his wife’s body in the trunk of his professional vehicle (” it’s like dragging a vulgar sack of potatoes “, he blurted, his voice choked with sobs) , then go into the house and take a sleeping pill. “It’s disgusting,” he breathes in tears.

“The (next) morning at 9 am, I made the decision to get rid of the body” in a nearby wood “and to make it up in jogging”, continued Jonathann Daval, who had first reported the disappearance of Alexia, allegedly never returned from a jog. He was arrested three months later, in January 2018, after playing the grieving widower.

Aware of having left traces

Once Alexia’s body was deposited in the forest, he attempted to set it ablaze with a bomb of expanding foam, a very flammable product. Only a few parts of the body will burn. “I left as soon as I set the fire,” he added.

Quickly, he was aware of having left several clues behind him: “the tracker” of his professional car, “the cap of the bomb, the bite: I knew very well that they were going to find me. As if part of me said: “you have to hide things” and the other, “no you must not do that” “.

Verdict rendered on Saturday

The verdict in Jonathann Dava’s trial will be delivered on Saturday and not Friday because of the delay in the proceedings, lawyers said Thursday evening. Me Gilles-Jean Portejoie, one of the counsel for the civil parties, thus thinks “to plead in the late afternoon” Friday, the Advocate General having according to him to pronounce his indictment “Saturday morning”. According to the former president of Clermont-Ferrand, the verdict could thus intervene “in the night of Saturday to Sunday”. Me Randall Schwerdorffer, one of Jonathann Daval’s lawyers, believes that the verdict should be pronounced “Saturday at the end of the day”.