France: Single mother suffocates baby to death on 1st birthday

French 'devoted' single mother marks daughter's first birthday by suffocating her to death.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Woman under arrest (illustrative)
Woman under arrest (illustrative)

The body of a one-year-old infant was discovered in a clothes recycling container in Angers, France, after the child's mother strangled her to death.

The murder, which authorities believe was planned in early December, occurred on February 7, Vanille's first birthday. Authorities discovered the body on Sunday, and the mother, Nathalie Stephan (39) has admitted guilt.

Stephan, a single mother, is known to the local authorities, and was living in a shelter. According to En24 News, Stephan was told on December 3 that she would need to leave the shelter on February 10. Vanille was living with a foster family, where a judge had placed her on her birth, but her mother was allowed to spend time with her.

According to Angers Prosecutor Éric Bouillard, Stephan left her home at 11:00a.m. on Friday morning, and was scheduled to return her daughter that evening to the welfare authorities, where her case was managed. However, the mother instead took her daughter and placed duct tape on her nose and mouth to keep her from breathing.

Bouillard noted that since the killing was premeditated, it is considered to be murder under French law. He also said that Stephan decided to murder her daughter on December 3, 2019, when she was released from the shelter.

Afrinik noted that Vanille is believed to have died between 1:00 and 3:00p.m. on Friday.

He confirmed that Vanille's autopsy showed she had died by suffocation, and that Stephan had seemed to be a loving and involved mother prior to the murder.

French media reported the pair's disappearance the next morning, but upon discovery of her whereabouts, the mother initially denied murdering her daughter.

The welfare authorities have stated that there were no warning signs which would hint to the disastrous end. Bouillard confirmed their statement, saying they had no way of knowing Stephan would murder her daughter and did not make any mistakes.