Valérie Bacot, a woman in France who was raped and abused for decades by her stepfather who later turned into her husband, has been freed.
Bacot was 12 when her stepfather, Daniel Polette, began raping her.
After he served three years in prison for sexually abusing her, he returned to the family and continued to rape her.
“Nobody seemed to find it bizarre that Daniel came back to live with us as if nothing had happened,” she wrote in her book.
She had his child when she was 17 and he installed her in an apartment, before she gave birth to three more children. In the years following, he continued to beat and sexually assault her.
They were married when she was 27 and he was 53.
After a few years, he forced her into prostitution and made her have sex with clients in the back of his car.
She killed him on March 13, 2016 with a gun he had hidden in the car after she was raped by a client.
Bacot said she knew she had to act after he asked her about her daughter’s sex life. She was arrested in 2017.
On Friday Jun. 25, a court sentenced her to four years in prison, with three years suspended.
The judge said that as she had already served one year, she was free, to the applause of the courtroom.
Bacot’s lawyers said they have taken legal action against the state of France for failing to investigate the case; Bacot’s children told the court they had reported their father to the police twice but no action was taken.
Domestic violence is a rampant problem is France; a woman is killed in France by her partner or former partner every three days, according to government figures in 2019.
“I would like to thank the court and all the support that I’ve had from everyone. Now is the time for a new fight for all the other woman and all the mistreatments,” Bacot said outside the court, CNN reported.