At the assizes, the lesson of a “Tanguy” accused of having killed his father

Recognizing his “atypical” profile, but rather “geek” than “psychopath”, the 59-year-old son accused of having killed his father, who mysteriously disappeared twenty years ago, tried on Tuesday before the Assize Court of Val- d’Oise to get rid of his label of “Tanguy” parricide.

A tall, skinny man with a high forehead and thin glasses, Patrick Wittier has been on trial since Monday in Pontoise for the disappearance of his father from the Argenteuil family pavilion in the summer of 2002, at a time when, at almost 40, this eternally unemployed man lived still with his parents.

According to the confession of his mother, who only broke the omerta fourteen years after the facts, the son killed the 73-year-old EDF retiree during a violent argument, the latter no longer supporting him. see vegetate at home. He would then cut the body with a saw and dispose of it in garbage bags given to the garbage collectors. The accused denies.

Before addressing the merits of the case on Wednesday, the Assize Court examined on Tuesday the complex personality of this solitary intellectual, a computer enthusiast, who lived in the darkness of a room with perpetually drawn shutters. A profile with a “schizoid tendency” for an interviewed psychologist, who lives detached from the world, considers himself more of an observer than an actor.

Appearing free, Patrick Wittier immediately wanted to dot the i’s. “They make me the big basic lazy, I’m going to have to rectify that”, he annoys during his two hours at the helm, a talkative interrogation prompt to digressions on orientation in Education national level, prison overcrowding or the development of information technology.

The first two days of hearing painted the portrait of a man with no social connections who lived off his parents, spending all day on his computer. Exasperated by this immobility, his father had put padlocks on the cupboards and the refrigerator to prevent him from eating and thus force him to leave the family home.

– “Apocalyptic portrait” –

A description which Patrick Wittier strives to take the opposite. Admittedly, he concedes, he is “atypical”. But atypical does not mean murderous.

– “We have the impression of someone who lives in a cellar”, pointed out the president Marc Trévidic.

– “In the (file at the) bottom, you have 266 pieces. Some people have drawn an apocalyptic portrait of me. We see the guy, he’s a psychopath! We’re walking on our heads, Mr. President”, retorts Patrick Wittier , which seems relatively comfortable.

Did he spend all his days lazing around in his room? Tells him that he worked on his computer, went out regularly, played sports. The failure of the few jobs he had in his life? Always an “injustice”.

Didn’t he want, at almost 40 years old, to free himself economically from his parents? “I’m a geek. Geeks are really special, we can be satisfied with very little.”

After his father disappeared, the padlocks were removed and the son took over running the household, extorting money from his mother. She filed a complaint against him for violence in 2005, before going to a retirement home. The family pavilion was then sold.

Called to the bar, the 69-year-old woman with whom Patrick Wittier has been living in a cerebral and platonic relationship since 2003 describes a “very fearful”, hypersensitive, “totally incapable of violence” being.

“I can’t see Patrick touching blood, or dirty things, he hates that,” says his partner, trembling, her head tucked into her shoulders.

The Assize Court will hear on Wednesday the decisive testimony of his 92-year-old mother, the cornerstone of a file lacking in material elements and which is worth to Patrick Wittier to incur life imprisonment. The verdict is expected on Thursday.

At the assizes, the lesson of a “Tanguy” accused of having killed his father