Aurore!  The Mystery of the Martyred Child

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Le Devoir, April 27, 1920, p. 3



Quebec City, 27 (D. N. C.).-The trial of Télesphore Gagnon continued yesterday afternoon. The Court heard the daughter of the accused, little Marie-Jeanne Gagnon, who continued her testimony, as well as Gérard Gagnon, son of the Gagnon woman.

The young girl stated that her father admitted beating Aurore more than he beat his horses. The victim was gentle and good, and it was her mother who found all sorts of faults in her so that she would be beaten. The remainder of the testimony was a repetition of what she had said at the previous court sessions.

Young Gérard saw his father beat the victim with an axe handle and a braided thong whip. Once, after he had beaten her in such a way, she had black eyes.

Madame Télesphore Badeau, who was the last witness to be heard at yesterday’s session, recounted how the accused had told of beating the child just enough to have the upper hand. She asked him if he was not worried that he might kill her and he did not answer.

It is believed that the trial will end today and that a verdict will be handed down tonight.

Quebec City, 27 - (D.N.C.) – When the trial of Télesphore Gagnon resumed, testimony was heard from the young Georges-Etienne Gagnon, age 7, who declared that his father beat his daughter Aurore with whips and switches in reaction to his mother’s lies. The child said that the father would never have beaten her if he had not been so exasperated by the Gagnon woman’s tales.

Monsieur Odilon Auger recounted how the accused had told him of beating his child until she bled because she was hard-headed and that he had decided not to beat her anymore as it was useless.

The last Crown witnesses were Monsieur Onésime Lemay and Mademoiselle Saint-Onge, who taught little Aurore and declared that she was a good and intelligent student.

The defence then started to present evidence. Father Massé was the first major witness. During a parish visit, the Gagnon woman accused little Aurore of all sorts of vices, and also of stealing something in the church. The parish priest found the situation sad as he knew that it was not true.

Source: Correspondant Le Devoir, "Des témoignages peu rassurants," Le Devoir (Montréal), April 27, 1920.

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