When Isabelle Laville went missing while on her way home from college in December 1987, the police hoped to bring her back safely. However, her family began fearing the worst when days passed without any news of the teenager. Netflix’s ‘Monique Olivier: Accessory to Evil’ chronicles the shocking incident and portrays how Isabelle’s body was found in a disused well more than 18 years after her murder. If you are intrigued by the details surrounding the crime and want to find out more, we have you covered.
How Did Isabelle Laville Die?
A resident of the commune of Saint-Georges-sur-Baulche in North-Central France, Isabelle was just seventeen years old at the time of her disappearance. People who knew her described her as a lively and caring teenager who loved living life to the fullest and would always treat others with kindness. Moreover, apart from sharing a deep and intimate bond with her parents, Isabelle was known for her amicable nature, which helped her make friends pretty quickly. Besides, she was also praised as a student by her teachers at the Bienvenu-Martin college in Auxerre, and most mentioned that the 17-year-old had huge aspirations for her future. Yet, people had no idea that a tragedy would dash such dreams to the ground.
December 11, 1987, started like any other typical day as Isabelle set out for her college in the morning. However, the 17-year-old never returned home that afternoon, and her parents got significantly worried as the hours passed. Eventually, they got a few people together and combed through the local areas looking for the teenager. Volunteers even asked around for the missing girl and learned that she was seen walking down the road she usually took to her home in Saint-Georges-sur-Baulche. However, this was the last time anyone ever saw Isabelle, as she disappeared soon after and never made it back home.
Anxious and concerned, Isabelle’s parents reported her missing to the authorities, but reports claim the police response was relatively poor. Although detectives organized search parties and canvassed the area where she went missing, they could not find any leads that might have led to her whereabouts. Besides, law enforcement officials even interviewed several of the teenager’s friends, but with no immediate suspects on the radar, the investigation stalled for some time before going cold. Eventually, On July 11, 2006, more than eighteen years after Isabelle went missing, a police team located human remains at the bottom of a disused well in Bussy-en-Othe, France. Using dental records, authorities were able to identify the remains as that of Isabelle Laville, and reports mentioned that she had been sexually assaulted and raped before her murder.
Who Killed Isabelle Laville?
The initial investigation into Isabelle’s murder was highly challenging as the police did not have any leads or witnesses to work with. Although they interviewed several of the victim’s acquaintances, most talked about the teenager’s friendly nature and insisted that she did not have any enemies who would target her in such a gruesome manner. Incidentally, the road Isabelle was last seen on is around two kilometers in length, and while investigators carried out a thorough search of the area, they could not come up with a clue that could lead to a possible suspect. Hence, with no way out, the police turned to the public for help and asked anyone with any information to step forward. This step appeared to be an initial success, as authorities were bombarded with tips, but with most of them leading to dead ends, the investigation came to a sudden halt.
In June 2003, police officers in Belgium arrested a man named Michel Fourniret after a thirteen-year-old girl from the city of Ciney claimed he had tried to kidnap her. The girl mentioned that she was walking by herself near her home when Michel drove up to her in a van and asked for directions to a nearby place. Although the girl was pretty apprehensive of strangers, Michel managed to win her trust before asking her to get inside the van. Once inside, the kidnapper pushed the thirteen-year-old to the back of the vehicle and restrained her before threatening to kill her. He even threatened to assault her sexually, but the teenager somehow broke free of her bonds and jumped out of the van once it slowed down. She then flagged down a passing car and asked the driver to take her to the police station.
When investigating Michel, the police came across his wife, Monique Olivier, who initially claimed she was forced into being complicit in her husband’s crimes. However, upon further interrogation, the police found out that Monique was a willing conspirator, and soon Michel confessed to several homicides, including the murder of Isabelle Laville, before leading the police to the locations where he had buried some of his victims. Once presented in court in 2008, Michel Fourniret was convicted on eight counts of murder, which fetched him a life sentence. Similarly, Monique was found guilty of participating actively in some of the murders and was sentenced to 28 years to life in prison in the same year. Hence, at present, Monique is still serving her sentence behind bars, while Michel Fourniret passed away on May 10, 2021, at the age of 79.
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