Remorseful Fritzl: I Want Only the Hardest Punishment

Daughter's testimony convinced him to confess, incest dad says
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 27, 2009 1:12 PM CDT
Defendant Josef Fritzl stands in the courtroom of the provincial courthouse in St. Poelten, Austria, March 19, 2009.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Josef Fritzl describes intense feelings of remorse in the first interview since his trial, the Telegraph reports. Fritzl, who abruptly switched his plea to guilty in the middle of the proceedings, said his decision was prompted by hearing his daughter describe in court how he imprisoned and habitually raped her: “After that, I want only the hardest punishment.”

“As I noticed that she was here, in the courtroom, and I finally turned, and saw her myself, I was suddenly so ashamed,” Fritzl said. “I understood, finally, what suffering I brought to my family. I knew I had to confess everything.” Fritzl says he hopes psychiatrists will explore his “sick soul” in order to discover how best to help his family.