NOTE: Two murders, on separate occasions, are attributed to Marie Doiselet (called Celina Doiselet in one article). In our collection of female serial killer case, we ordinarily keep to victim count of three or more (including failed attempts), but in cases where the killer is so young it seems reasonable to make an exception. Cases of children who murder on more than one occasion are, it goes without saying, important sources worthy of study for those who wish to understand the crime of serial killing and the mentality, methods and motives of such killers.
FULL TEXT (Article 1 of 2): A double murder has been committed at Bar-sur-Aube, France, by a little girl named Marie Doiselet, who is only 13 years old. She was engaged as nursemaid in the house of a neighbour, named Caratnauti, and was entrusted with the care of his two children, one aged six months and the other two years and a-half. The youngest died suddenly on June 23, and the other under precisely similar circumstances on July 23. Suspicions were excited, and it turned out that the youthful murderess had killed each of them by placing a handkerchief over the mouth and nose, and pressing heavily on the chest until suffocation ensued. She confessed the crime and the methods of its execution, and said she wanted to get rid of the trouble of looking after the children.
[Untitled, The Otago Daily Times (Dunedin, New Zealand), Jan. 15, 1889, p. 2]
FULL TEXT (Article 2 of 2): A nice little girl is one Celina Doiselet, for that is the name of the little monster who has just appeared before Assize Court the Aube, in France, on a charge of deliberately killing two children. She herself is but a child, not yet 13 years of age, but in the spring of last year she was placed in service by her parents, her duties being those of nursem.id [sic:Latin for “private nurse”]. She had two little boys to take charge of, aged respectively three years and six months, and it seems from the evidence given that this youthful criminal being of a lazy disposition, did not like having to take care of them. So as a means of relieving herself of her little charges, she killed them both, the elder one, Paul, by twisting a pillow case about his head and sitting on him till he ceased to breathe, the younger one by stuffing a handkerchief into his mouth and kneeling on its chest. Both the children were thus got rid of the same day. The murderess was asked in court whether she regretted having committed these terrible crimes, and she said she thought she did. This precocious criminal has been sent to as house of correction for ten years. When she comes out it is to be doubted whether she will get another place as nursemaid.
[“A Young Murderess,” The Kiama Independent And Shoalhaven Advertiser (Kiama, New Zealand), Jan. 15, 1889, p. 4]
On lit dans l’Intransigeant :
« La Cour d’assises de l’Aube vient d’avoir à juger un crime que l’on peut citer comme exemple de la perversité précoce la plus monstrueuse.
« L’accusée est une petite fille de treize ans, Marie Doiselet. Elle est entrée, en mai 1888, chez les époux Caramanti, près de Bar-sur-Aube. Elle avait spécialement la garde des deux jeunes enfants de ses maîtres, l‘un âgé de deux ans et demi, l’autre âgé de six mois.
« Les deux petits moururent asphyxiés à un mois d’intervalle.
« La petite Doiselet avait étouffé les deux enfants de la même façon, en leur serrant le nez et la bouche, et en appuyant sur la poitrine. »
Elle finit par avouer son crime, et par en donner elle-même l’étrange mobile: comme elle est très paresseuse, elle voulait à tout prix quitter le service des époux Caramanti, malgré l’opposition de sa mère, et elle n’a trouvé rien de mieux que de se débarrasser des deux pauvres petits.
[Arthur Bonnot, Les fruits de l'école sans Dieu, 1890, Propagande Catholique, Paris, p. 65; reprinted from l’Intransigeant]