Gabin was 22 months old. Despite a 40-minute cardiac massage, emergency workers at Smur de la Creuse are unable to bring him back to life on June 7, 2013. A few hours after his death, a doctor has the difficult task of examining the toddler and to determine the causes of death. He notes the "extreme thinness of the child apparently very undernourished and whose ribs can be seen and counted". At 22 months, Gabin weighs only 5.8 kg.
The lawyer also notes "traces of extreme dirt on the hands, stigmata of obvious dirt on the pubis and the roots of the lower limbs". According to him, Gabin suffered during his last hours of "extreme dehydration".
The father unable to give the dates of birth and death of his son
In a few lines of a cold autopsy report, the doctor sums up a short life of suffering. From Tuesday to Friday, his parents, Edouard R. and Celine V., 40 and 34 years, are tried in the Assize Court of Creuse for "deprivation of care or food followed by death" ". The doctor of the family, a time returned to the assizes, will finally be tried in 2020 before the Criminal Court for "non-assistance to person in danger". "This trial is one of indifference and negligence, said Yves Crespin, lawyer of the association Blue Child, the only civil party in this case. We are dealing with parents who have simply abandoned their child. The father will even recognize, during the instruction, being unable to give the dates of birth and death of his son.
For 22 months, Gabin will have lived as forgotten by his family, between an old mother and an alcoholic father. Both are locked in important financial problems. In the family home, the investigators discover during searches "clothes strewn the floor, litter that cluttered the kitchen, the fridge contained stale food," wrote the investigating judge in his indictment. The bedding was very dirty, stinking of urine. The symbol, for the judge in charge of the file, of a "manifest incompetence" of the parents.
A single half-bottle for his last three days of life
A child deprived of basic care therefore, but especially "obviously deprived of food, in a chronic way, then in a particularly pronounced way during his last weeks of life". According to Edward R., Gabin has only "taken half a bottle" during his last three days. Celine V. does not remember having fed Gabin the day he died. She just thought she was "tired" …
For several months, however, the child had lost a lot of weight. During the winter of 2012, a lung infection made him lose five pounds. Evidence of a degraded state of health, the child had even stopped walking since December 2012.
"This trial must be a wake-up call for all doctors"
Elements that never seem to have really alerted Dr. V., Gabin's doctor. On seven occasions between January 25, 2012 and April 25, 2013, he saw Gabin without ever perceiving "the slightest danger" or "objective sign of ill-treatment". A counter-expertise conducted after the death of Gabin is however much more severe. By forgetting to note the height and the weight of the child, Dr. V. would have shown a "wrongful abstention". "The fact that the child does not walk at the age of 20 should have alerted him and direct Gabin to a pediatric team," says the counter-expertise.
Initially referred to the Assize Court, the 61-year-old practitioner will finally be tried in 2020 in the Criminal Court. He will, however, be heard by the Assize Court this week. "This trial should be a wake-up call for all doctors, said Yves Crespin. Only 5% of the reports come from doctors, while they are in the best position to see that a child is in danger. This child could have been saved. Contacted, the lawyer of Gabin's parents was not available.