Haralambos Anagnostopoulos, the 32-year-old pilot who killed his young wife at their family home at Glyka Nera, told the police he had “nightmares, feelings of guilt, and saw Caroline in my sleep, but, yes, I would not have come to confess”.
It is expected that he will state that the murder of his 20-year-old wife Caroline Crouch was not premeditated.
Speaking to ANT1 TV while in prison, he said, “I wish I could turn back time. I wish I had not destroyed our lives: Caroline’s, the little one’s and my own.”
He said that he hugged Caroline’s mum at the trisagio memorial service at Alonissos because he felt remorse. “I felt her pain. I always loved my mother-in-law and I’ll always love Caroline,” he said.
The two families had very good relations. Haralambos’ brother, Fotis Anagnostopoulos, rushed to the Crouch family’s aid following the young woman’s death and took care of little Lydia.
Caroline’s mother always held deep respect for her son-in-law’s parents, whose father Kostas Anagnostopoulos was a civil engineer and mother Georgia was a teacher.
When asked by the press about the future of the young baby, she said that she did not know what the future would hold but stated that she would not like to deprive Lydia of her paternal grandparents.
A mutual friend of the two families told Proto Thema newspaper that the two families are likely to keep cordial ties for the sake of baby Lydia, whose mother is dead and father in prison. Protothema.gr reports that the child’s paternal grandparents will ask for joint custody.
At the moment, Caroline’s mother is in a state of shock.
Up until the time of the confession, the father had the custody of the child.
The prosecutor involved with the case will decide on custody rights.
The current deliberations about where the child will be housed only concern a temporary arrangement, as the final decision is up to a court which meets in 90 days.
37 days following the murder
For 37 days since murdering his wife, the husband played the role of the grieving widower, making efforts to appear to the public as the wronged man who had his wife taken away from him.
The police, from the start, found his responses to questions contrived and calculated.
During the first ten days of investigations he appeared strangely cooperative, showing an overwhelming calmness. During one of the many meetings with homicide detectives, he expressed his opposition to references regarding his personal matters and was outraged by statements made by Caroline’s psychologist which revealed that the murdered woman considered her marriage to be far from perfect.
“I want to sue her,” he told a police officer, but soon changed his stance.
For the second 10-day period following his wife’s murder, he appeared a desperate man forcing himself to stand on his feet for the sake of young Lydia, the baby found crying beside her murdered mother.
He was outraged when police referred to Caroline’s life insurance. “How can such things be said by police officers,” he said, brushing off the notion that this could be a motive.
From 2-12 June, he insisted that burglars, foreigners, had killed Caroline and portrayed himself as an animal lover. “They killed my dog like they killed my wife,” he said, in reference to the family pet which had been drowned and hung.
Homicide detectives investigated the murder scene, with findings showing that it had been staged. Specifically, certain elements appeared exaggerated, such as the break-in through the window, the taking of the memory card from CCTV cameras and the hanging of the dog.
At the memorial service of the young woman on the island of Alonissos on 18 June, homicide detectives approached the suspect and escorted him to Athens. At the General Police headquarters they asked, “Is there something you want to tell us?”
After eight hours of questioning he confessed to the murder.
Statements made by a neighbour proved crucial to solving the case, and it was one of the ‘keys’ which lead the police to the suspect.
On 11 May, the neighbour had said that she heard the dog whimpering before hearing someone go down the stairs whom she suspected was Babis who had gone down to calm the animal as the noises stopped. She said that at 6.15am she had a call from her neighbour and heard moans. It was then that she realised that something was wrong and alerted the police.