Five years later, its fullness remains as staggering as it is inexplicable. Convicted on appeal by the Assize Court of Val-de-Marne, the man with psychiatric disorders who drove into a pizzeria in Seine-et-Marne on Monday August 14, 2017 was unable to give a valid reason this Thursday to his act and left the victims to their total incomprehension. And to their growing annoyance.
David Patterson, 37, was sentenced in 2021 to life imprisonment at first instance by the Assize Court in Seine-et-Marne. He has been on trial since last week at the courthouse in Créteil for starting a large engine at full throttle on the crowded terrace of a pizzeria in the ZAC de la Bourgade in Sept-Sorts, killing a teenager and seriously injuring twelve other customers. .
In the defendant’s box, the former security guard, then out of work for a year and in the grip of a persecution delirium, unfolds in a spontaneous statement the strange gears of this day, August 14, 2017. An innocuous Monday, which begins with a mistake by the postman, continues with races at the Super U and ends with carnage at a family restaurant.
Still not an ounce of empathy for the victims
Crouched with a white polo shirt over his shoulders, David Patterson delivers at once a mechanical, detached, emotionless story. “On the day of the events, I received a postcard. I thought it was Laurence T. [NDLR : l’ex-compagne de David Patterson] who sent it to me. I was very angry. Feeling insecure, I decided to change the locks on the house. Afterwards I called my father to tell him that Laurence had sent me a postcard from Germany. He said to me: “Don’t worry David, you’re crazy!”.
I went to Leroy Merlin. I felt hunted, spied on, I was on the lookout. I have been to Super U on the way home to shop for food for the week. I felt followed, I walked fast, I looked everywhere. I took a long detour to get to my home. I changed the lock on the house, I put the shopping away.
Late in the afternoon I visited my neighbor. I told him I felt insecure. He told me it was ridiculous and advised me to set an alarm if I was scared. But I didn’t trust the alarmists. »
In the evening I had planned to eat with friends at the base. Since I had changed my phone, I had not received his cancellation message. So I took my shower, I changed to go to his place. Then I took my vehicle. On the way I ran into my dentist. I thought he was following me.
So instead of going left, I went right. I was in a state of intense anxiety, I was really confused. I stopped at a red light, I looked in my mirror to see if I was being followed. Then I returned to the industrial zone. And I rushed into the pizzeria. Not a word about the bloody scene that follows. Not an ounce of empathy for the victims. Always not…
A wave of irritation on the benches of the civil parties
President Isabelle Pulver carefully tries to get the accused to open up more conciliatoryly rather than offensively. She tries to get him to go beyond his agreed upon answers, tries to understand the reasons for his gratuitous act of violence. But at the box office, it’s a dead end.
“I wanted the manipulation to stop,” David Patterson repeats every time David Patterson is stuck like a broken record. A wave of indignation runs over the benches of the fifty civilian parties.
The delicate, shaven-headed defendant, who has carefully studied the criminal code in his cell, is hoping to get a reduced sentence on appeal because of his psychiatric disorders.
At first instance last year, the Assize Court in Seine-et-Marne had indeed recognized a “change” in his judgment at the time of the facts, but had sentenced him to the maximum sentence because of his “unusual dangerousness”. A verdict is expected on Friday evening.