In 2008, Mohammed Merah,
the terrorist who carried out the massacre
at the Jewish school in Toulouse was serving an 18 month prison sentence for aggravated robbery, he was 20-years-old.
The French news website Le Point on Thursday published Merah's psychiatric report which was filed before French courts at the time. The report reveals that Merah attempted suicide by hanging and was committed in a psychiatric ward for 13 days as a result.
The report details Merah's family problems; his parents divorced when he was five years old, his father returned to Algeria in 2008, shortly before his son's arrest. His mother who had no profession found it difficult to raise five children on her own.
The report describes an irregular education, with Merah changing schools on a yearly basis. Eventually he ended up at a vocational college where he was trained to be a physical education trainer. He found employment in his profession, but the robbery charge put an end to that.
In the second part of the report the psychiatrist describes Merah's personality. A "courteous, correct and talkative" young man. That fits in with statements made by Merah's friends who said he was "calm, gentle and loved by everyone."
Merah - suicidal introvert (Photo: Le Point)
According to the expert he was of "average intelligence and his potential has been reduced by his troubled school history. The expert noted that Merah exhibited "neurotic fragility due to the departure of his father and lack of supervision on his mother's part."
Yet he also wrote that Merah's "mood is stable" but that he "recently had dark thoughts," and spoke of "suicidal intentions."
The expert diagnosed the future terrorist as a "polar introvert": "I like to sit in my corner," said said Merah and added that he severed connections with the bad company he was keeping and didn't want to see anyone.
He also notes that Merah exhibited "polar narcissism" noting his slicked back hair and Merah's admission that he is interested in personal grooming and designer clothes.
Then the report then goes on to address the question of religion: Mohamed Merah started reading the Koran prays and observes the Ramadan fast.
The expert advises psychotherapeutic treatment upon his release from prison and the resumption of vocational training. Le Point concludes the report by stating "The rest is history."