Dirk Raats Wiki – Dirk Raats Biography

This is the first picture of the Dutch drug addict accused of fatally shooting 11-year-old Solaine Thornton with a rifle as she sat on a swing in her garden in Brittany. The reclusive Dirk Raats was barely seen in the small rural town of Saint Herbot, where he had lived with his Belgian wife Marlene Van Hoof. But neighbors have confirmed that it is the 71-year-old former teacher who has been arrested for the murder on Saturday night. Described in the French press as “like a character from Asterix”, Raats appeared before a judge in the city of Brest last night.

The images of the Dutchman emerged when local residents revealed that Solaine’s mother, Rachael, cradled her daughter as she died. The Dutch national and the family had been in a long dispute over their adjoining land. Rachael told his friends that a neighbor had threatened them with a gun several years ago after they cut down a hedge, claiming he was exposing his house to public view.

The pensioner is accused of being under the influence of alcohol and drugs when he fired a burst of shots at the family as they enjoyed an evening barbecue. Solaine received a catastrophic gunshot wound to the heart while her father, who is now in a coma, was shot in the head and her mother in the back and head. Both parents have had surgery.


Dirk Raats Age

The age of Dirk Raatsis 71 years.

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Dirk Raats shot and killed a British girl

Born in Antwerp in 1952 but described by French prosecutors as a Dutch citizen, he moved to France in 2017 with his wife but refused to learn French or participate in town life. According to his neighbors, he led an unconventional lifestyle, only leaving his French country house to camp with his wife and his dogs in his old Land Rover.

Yesterday he was indicted for the murder of Solaine and the attempted murder of her father Adrian, 52, and her mother Rachael, 49. As her eight-year-old sister Celeste ran to safety, her mother Rachael yelled, ‘Run girls, run!’ Today the neighbors told their dismay at the horrendous crime. One told MailOnline: ‘I’ve seen him but never talked to him. Nobody has. He didn’t speak French and rarely left his house.


His wife, Marlene Van Hoof, was arrested with him following the shooting Saturday night after armed police surrounded the property. She was charged with concealing Raats’ two weapons: a hunting rifle and a pistol. Raats had bought the weapons illegally and did not have a license for either, she has reported. He barricaded himself in his house after the shooting.

Van Hoof was released last night and today she returned to her country house. She refused to speak when she approached him. Locals have described how the dispute turned into a tragedy, with a neighbor recounting how Solaine’s younger sister was able to flee to safety. Raats was determined to kill the family, locals said.

After the gunman opened fire and struck her sister, Celeste, who had been playing on a swing with Solaine, ran about 1,000 feet through her garden and up a village path to the house. by Pierre Leroy. “Celeste had dodged a bullet and she ran for her life here saying, ‘My sister was killed, and the man shot my dad.’ We went straight there and the girl was dead and her mother was cradling her in her arms and screaming,” Thornton’s family friend told The Daily Telegraph.


Adrian was also screaming, hurt but conscious, but the mother, who is now stable but undergoing surgery, understood that it was too late for her daughter. “There were no words, just screaming,” Leroy said. He told the newspaper that her wife accompanied the girl to the hospital and stayed with her Monday afternoon.

The family friend and another local, an 83-year-old retired soldier, told the publication that they were both convinced the Dutchman wanted to kill the entire family. Prosecutors suggested last night that the girl was “not the target” of the shooting. Speaking at a news conference on Monday, prosecutor Camille Miansoni said: “It appears that he was not aiming at the girl.”

The prosecutor also claimed that the family’s work in a hedge dividing the two properties “exasperated the suspect who then took a loaded .22 caliber rifle and fired three or four shots, hitting three victims.” Solaine’s classmates will observe a minute of silence later today. Solaine was a very popular sixth-year student at Jean Jaures College, where a “medical monitoring team” exists to take care of her classmates.


“The feelings are very strong and there is a great deal of sadness,” a university spokesman said. “There will be a minute of silence on Tuesday so students and staff can remember Solaine.” Guylene Esnault, director of educational services in the Finistere department covering Saint-Herbot, said: ‘This is a small area and everyone knows each other. The children will have found out what happened.

“The director of the university will say what is appropriate for his students, and a follow-up team has been established that includes a doctor, nurses and psychiatrists.” Mael de Calan, president of the Finisterre departmental council, said there was “shock and dismay after the murder of an 11-year-old schoolgirl.” ‘Such a drama, between neighbors, reminds us that the increase in violence in our society must be combated unanimously.

“I send all my condolences to the family and loved ones of the girl, and my most sincere thoughts to the teachers and students of the Huelgoat school.” Solaine was shot while she was playing in her garden around 10 p.m. Saturday. The girl’s grandfather said Monday that she “didn’t stand a chance.”


She and her family were enjoying the warm afternoon in the garden of her home in the village of Saint-Herbot, near Quimper, when the Dutch neighbor shot them several times, French prosecutors say. ‘How are you going to top that? She will live with her forever,” grandfather Irvin Thornton said of Solaine’s younger sister after her ordeal. ‘How is she going to get over that? She will live with her forever,” grandfather Irvin Thornton said of Solaine’s younger sister after the ordeal.Read More……..

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