Sunday, September 9, 2012
Hamida Djandoubi was the last person to be guillotined in France, at Baumettes Prison in Marseille. He died, headless on 10 September 1977.
The fearsome Guillotine machine!!!
The guillotine is a device used for carrying out executions by decapitation, consists of a tall upright frame from which an angled blade is suspended. This blade is raised with a rope, and the condemned's neck is positioned beneath it. The blade then falls rapidly, severing the head from the body. Death is instant.
Hamida Djandoubi, was a Tunisian immigrant who had been convicted of the torture and murder of 21-year-old Elisabeth Bousquet, his former girlfriend, in Marseille. Marcel Chevalier served as chief executioner.
Born in Tunisia around 1949, in 1968 Djandoubi started living in Marseille and working in a grocery store. He went on to work as a landscaper but had a workplace accident in 1971 that resulted in the loss of two-thirds of his right leg.
In 1973, a 21-year-old woman named Elisabeth Bousquet, whom Djandoubi had met in the hospital while recovering from his amputation, filed a complaint against him, stating that he had tried to force her into prostitution.
After his arrest and eventual release from custody during the spring of 1973, Djandoubi drew two other young girls into his confidence and then forced them to "work" for him.
Djandoubi deserved to be executed that way because in July 1974, he kidnapped Bousquet and took her into his home and in full view of the terrified girls, he beat the woman before stubbing a lit cigarette all over her breasts and genital area.
Djandoubi took her by car to the outskirts of Marseille and strangled her there.
On his return Djandoubi warned the two girls to say nothing of what they had seen. Bousquet's body was discovered in a shed by a boy on 7 July 1974.
One month later, Djandoubi kidnapped another girl who managed to escape and report him to police.
After a lengthy pre-trial process, Djandoubi eventually appeared in court in Aix-en-Provence on charges of torture-murder, rape and premeditated violence on 24 February 1977. His main defence revolved around the supposed effects of the amputation of his leg six years earlier which his lawyer claimed had driven him to a paroxysm of alcohol abuse and violence, turning him into a different man.
On 25 February 1977, he was condemned to death and at 4:40 a.m., 10th September 1977 he was executed by guillotining. He died as a headless man!!!!!
Other hardcore criminals executed by the guillotine in France were two child murderers Christian Ranucci (guillotined on 28 July 1976) and Jérôme Carrein (guillotined on 23 June 1977).
That is the story of Hamida Djandoubi, the last person executed via the fearsome guillotine in France.
Guillotine executions was abolished in France in 1981 following the election of François Mitterrand.