Police in France are investigating what they believe to be the murder of a cyclist – but with no-one having reported the disappearance of the apparent victim, and no trace of her body, their investigation has reached an impasse.
Le Figaro reports that police believe that on the early afternoon of Wednesday 9 March this year, north of Evreux in Normandy’s Eure department, the driver of a black Audi A4 carrying Polish registration plates was involved in a collision with a female bike rider – and subsequently bludgeoned her to death with a shovel.
A 46-year-old Polish male remains in custody having been indicted in June of “murder, concealment of a corpse, destruction of evidence and false denunciation to the judicial authorities.”
Details of the case were revealed in a press conference this week by Évreux public prosecutor, Rémi Coutin, who said: “On the morning of 14 May 2022 a 48-year-old woman, residing in Saint-Saëns in Seine-Maritime, presented herself to the Dieppe gendarmerie declaring that she wanted to report a murder committed two months earlier, at the beginning of March, by her ex-companion.”
The murder victim is believed to be a woman who was riding a bicycle, possibly with panniers, and who was carrying a backpack, whom the suspect had crashed into while driving his car before returning to the scene to kill her. It is believed that he then buried her body and bicycle in nearby woodland.
According to the public prosecutor, the former partner of the suspect “with whom she had had an affair since March 2019, and from whom she had just separated” said that he had “called her at the end of the afternoon, clearly panicked and under the influence of alcohol, to tell him that he had just killed someone, while he was driving his car.”
The suspect is also alleged to have similarly confided in a friend about what had happened.
On 12 March, the former partner of the suspect is said to have gone to his home in Saint-Pierre-du-Bosguérard, while he was away, and discovered his vehicle with a damaged windscreen and traces of blood on the bodywork.
The following day, she managed to speak to him in person, and he is reported to have told her that while driving, he had hit a cyclist, whom he described as a woman aged in her sixties who in his words “looked like a tramp,” causing a deep facial wound and knocking her unconscious.
He is then said to have told his former partner that he “put the body and bike into his car, hid them on an embankment, drove home then returned to the scene with a shovel, with the intention of burying the body and the bike.”
Realising the victim was still alive, it is alleged by his ex-companion that he killed the cyclist with several blows of his shovel, before burying the victim and her bicycle.
According to Le Figaro, however, there are two major stumbling blocks to the investigation, hence the appeal by police for information this week; one, that no-one has reported a woman fitting the victim’s description as missing, the other that to date, no trace of a buried body has yet been found in the area.
Simon joined road.cc as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.