Two small bunk beds, a desk with a large glass top representing a blue world map.
On the floor, a Union Jack carpet and on the wall, a “London” frieze.
Board games are stored in a cupboard.
This modest children's room, Julie Douib had fitted out with her small means to accommodate Lucca, 10 years old and Anthony, 8 years old, in her three-room apartment in the residence of the sea in L'Ile-Rousse (Haute-Corse) ), where she had settled since her separation.
It is in this small room that the young mother was shot in March 2019 by Bruno Garcia-Cruciani, tried for murder until Wednesday in Bastia.
Of course, the domestic violence suffered by Julie Douib for several years, the crime, her premeditation have been meticulously addressed for four days by the Assize Court of Haute-Corse.
But, in the background, on the mouths of each witness, each civil party, it is the fate of the children that focuses the attention.
"He did it that asshole, he did it!"
First, the way they found out that their mother had been murdered by their father. On March 3, 2019, Lucas and Anthony see their father come home, their mother's pants stained with blood. " What did you do ? The elder would have asked. The gendarmes take the children away and hand them over to Julie's friends. A few hours later, all three take it upon themselves to announce the terrible news to the little ones: Anthony in the bedroom, Lucas in the living room. “I thought Anthony was going to choke. We opened his jacket for him, says one of these friends at the helm. Within five seconds, we heard his brother's screams in the living room. We joined them. "According to his testimony, on the sofa, Lucca bangs his fist while crying:" He did it, that idiot, he did it! "
Still according to this friend of Julie, on the day of the white march in homage to the victim, one of the little boys asks: "Where did he shoot him, dad?"
"The boy does not wait for her to answer him and hits his chest:" He shot her there, he shot her in the heart.
After having lived during the first years of their childhood in a heavy environment, having witnessed the violence of their father, consoled their mother and being taken hostage in the conflict between their parents, the two little boys realize the worst: dad killed mom.
Read also Julie Douib's murder trial: the recordings that demonstrate the violence of the accused
Since then, the two boys have been in the care of Violette and Lucien Douib, Julie's parents, and live in Vaires-sur-Marne (Seine-et-Marne) and “are rebuilding themselves”. "They are the biggest victims today," notes Me Francesca Seatelli, lawyer for the boys, who pleads this Tuesday at the end of the afternoon. And it is a civil battle that began between the grandparents and Bruno Garcia-Cruciani. This battle that one feels throughout this hearing sometimes resembles a session in the office of a Family Judge (JAF). “We have the trial, but also the JAF. He disputes everything. We are fed up with shrinks, judges. We would like to live like everyone else, like children, ”pleads Violette Douib at the helm. A few minutes later, her husband, Lucien confirms: “Her only goal is to take them away from us. "
"I want to reconnect with them"
Bruno Garcia-Cruciani only speaks to him of his children, even if he does not let any emotion shudder.
In a monotonous voice, like a broken record, the father keeps repeating: "I want to reconnect with them to explain to them what happened and to be there for them (...) I cannot hear from them because they are isolated up there (
Editor's note: in Ile-de-France
But their grandfather opposed the right of correspondence.
To prove that he is a "good father," the accused endlessly lists all the activities he shared with the boys.
But "a bad husband is never, never will be a good father", retorts Me Francesca Seatelli.
When "we love our children, we do not take their mother away from them," denounces the representative of Lucca and Anthony.
To read also Murder of Julie Douib: "Apologies and regrets, I will give them to my children"
Bruno Garcia-Cruciani faces life imprisonment and possibly… the forfeiture of his parental authority over little boys.
As of December 2019, when a parent commits a crime on the other parent, they can have all authority over the children completely removed.
“I have seen children terrified at the idea that their father could come and look for them and claim rights over them (…) I ask you to protect them”, supports Me Francesca Seatelli.
Dignified, right, Corine, the elder sister of the accused, who strongly condemns the “horrible” acts committed by her brother, is worried: “Should the family of the accused's murderer also pay the price for what he did? (…) I have a brother in prison, I am singled out from morning to night and I can't even get even news from my nephews. "The fifty-year-old is worried about not having been able to exchange or see the children since March 2019:" I did not know that justice condemned everyone. "
In December, custody of Lucca and Anthony was provisionally entrusted to grandparents Douib. In July, a new hearing, the course of which should depend on the verdict of this Wednesday evening, should decide the final fate of the two little boys, aged 10 and 12 today. It is the magistrates of the court, and not the jurors, who will decide whether or not the deprivation of parental authority in the wake of the verdict.