Provence & Côte d'Azur: Main suspect in Collobrières cop killings reportedly confesses to the murders of two policewomen
Var cop killer charged
He is the main suspect in the brutal murders of two female members of the gendarmerie, shot dead when they responded to a call out in the Var town of Collobrières. Having already spent a large portion of his adulthood behind bars for drug and violent offences, Boumezar could now face life in prison.
35-year-old Audrey Bertaut-Landry, mother of two young daughters, and 29-year-old Alicia Champion, arrived at the suspect's home at around 11pm. Police suspect that, following a violent struggle, 30-year-old Boumezar was able to take Bertaut-Landry's gun from her before shooting the officer twice.
He then allegedly pursued Champion as she ran out into the street, shooting at her six separate times before finally killing the officer in plain view.
Both women were buried on Friday, five days after the shock killings. They're the first two female members of the gendarmerie to be simultaneously killed in the line of duty.
Boumezar and his girlfriend were arrested by police in the early hours of Monday 18th June as they tried to flee the town. Boumezar confessed to the murders and has been charged with the voluntary manslaughter of his first victim, and the premeditated homicide of his second victim. His girlfriend, who is yet to be identified, faces charges of collaboration and attempting to pervert the course of justice. Toulon Prosecutor Xavier Tarabeux revealed that the woman has spent time in prison for aggravated theft.
The streets of sleepy Collobrières, home to just 2,000 people, have been filled with flowers and messages of well-wishers from across France. The murders have rocked the gendarmerie, and local police have lamented the loss of the lives of their two female colleagues. Boumezar's mother has also given her condolences to the victims' families.
"What my son is is monstrous," she told reporters, "I cannot believe this, it is horrible."
Boumezar's brother, Chaouki, was also shocked and horrified by his sibling's suspected actions, adding, "He has not only killed two police officers, he has also killed my mother, my sister and me."