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He Hugged Dead Wife's Mother at Memorial, Then Was Arrested

Babis Anagnostopoulos charged with the murder of Caroline Crouch
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 23, 2021 3:01 AM CDT
Updated Jun 23, 2021 6:34 AM CDT

(Newser) – A 33-year-old Greek helicopter pilot is charged with murdering his 20-year-old wife and trying to frame her death as the result of a robbery gone wrong. Caroline Crouch was asphyxiated as she slept on May 11, authorities say, and for the next month, her husband Babis Anagnostopoulos told police three robbers had broken in, bound and gagged the couple, suffocated his wife, and took nearly $18,000 in cash. The couple's puppy was also found hanged to death with its own leash; their 1-year-old daughter, however, was unharmed. But authorities found no evidence to back up his claims, and after investigating surveillance footage, data from Crouch's watch, and Anagnostopoulos's phone, inconsistencies in the story began mounting, the BBC reports.

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Anagnostopoulos was taken in for questioning by police on June 17, the day of his wife's memorial, at which he had been pictured hugging her mother, the AP reports. On Tuesday, he was jailed pending his trial on charges of murder and felony animal abuse, plus multiple misdemeanors. He faces up to life behind bars if convicted. The case shocked Greece, and women's rights activists protested outside the Athens courthouse where he arrived to testify for five hours Tuesday. During the testimony, he denied that the killing was premeditated, claiming it took place in the heat of the moment. The prosecutor's office is also weighing who should get custody of the couple's daughter; both sets of grandparents are eager to take care of her. (Read more Greece stories.)

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