No, not the title of an Agatha Christie book but an event that took place near me on my visit to France last week.
I am sure any UK and probably other European readers will be aware of the events that took place last week near to the shores of Lake Annecy in France. But for anyone that doesn’t know and is interested in my account, it follows here.
Last Wednesday afternoon following our bike ride my friend Cyril and I were taking it easy around the campsite but late afternoon we became aware of the persistent wailing of police sirens up and down the road outside. We assumed there had been a big road accident or something.
Later in the evening I was catching up on the news from home on the BBC News website when I saw a report headed ‘4 people murdered in Eastern France’. This aroused my curiosity and I read on. It went on to say that 4 people camping by the side of Lake Annecy had been shot and one was a cyclist.
I immediately got on my phone to message friends and relations that it wasn’t me. Because I happened to also be camping beside lake Annecy and maybe they might be a bit concerned as there was no more detail at the time.
As things developed further and more information came to light, by the morning the story was a lot clearer. The events took place at a car park in a forest near a tiny place called Chevaline, close to Doussard, about one mile from where I was staying! It seems so far that 3 British citizens of Iranian origin who where holidaying in their caravan at a campsite just down the road were shot in their parked car, as was a French cyclist who appeared on the scene unexpectedly in the midst of the killing. He had just passed a British cyclist who was a former member of the RAF who came upon the scene as a green four wheel drive vehicle was disappearing down the lane. He found a 7/8 year old girl staggering around and administered first aid as far as possible and put her in the recovery position, which its said, probably saved her life. He called the Police and then all mayhem broke loose in the area.
The police arrived on the scene and under the instruction of the Forensic team didn’t touch the bodies that were still in the car. After about seven hours the forensic team allowed the bodies to be removed whereupon they discovered a four year old girl alive and hiding or covered by the bodies of her Mother and Grandmother, her father I assume was in the front. She hadn’t moved in all that time! probably too afraid.
The status at the moment is that the four year old has just returned to the UK, the older girl has just been resuscitated after an induced coma for a few days as she had a fractured skull. It is thought that she will have a lot of useful evidence when she can speak about the event. The adults had all been shot with two bullets each to the head which to some makes it sound like an organised ‘assassination’.
All kinds of inquiries are ongoing by the French police there and the English police here and many rumours exist about possible reasons and causes but we await further information. The situation is full of intrigue.
All this was going on so close to me and for the last couple of days before I left there was the intermittent wailing of police car sirens and the buzz of helicopters flying overhead. But that was about all I saw of the actual events.
The latest events can be viewed here on the BBC News website