HomeWorld NewsCaroline Crouch’s mum files for custody of baby Lydia so she is ‘not known as killer’s daughter’
Caroline Crouch’s mum files for custody of baby Lydia so she is ‘not known as killer’s daughter’
CAROLINE Crouch's mother has requested full custody of her 11-month-old granddaughter so that she is "not known as a killer's daughter".
Susan and David Crouch have asked a family court in Athens if they can solely care for Lydia, after her father Charalambos Babis Anagnostopoulos admitted to smothering Caroline in front of the tot.
The grief-stricken parents, who live on the Greek island of Alonissos, are also struggling with the report of a social worker, who suggests Lydia could retain memories of her mother's horrific murder.
Thanasis Harmanis, the Crouch family lawyer revealed: "We submitted for custody to be assigned to Caroline's mother because it is the most suitable environment, as in Athens little Lydia will be known as the daughter of a murderer, while in Alonnisos she will be the child who lost her mother."
"I was shocked when I read a report by the social worker that little Lydia, even though she is a newborn, can remember scenes of violence."
It comes just days after Anagnostopoulos was charged with the premeditated murder of his 20-year-old wife.
His parents are believed to be requesting joint custody of Lydia, suggesting she could split her time between Alonissos – Caroline's final resting place -and Athens.
Mr Harmanis said conversations between the couple were amicable, despite Lydia remaining in the custody of her paternal grandparents.
He said if Susan cannot look after Lydia, "it will be the death of her".
Anagnostopoulos's father Constantinos told reporters: "We will do whatever it takes to have custody of her and hope that we can come to an arrangement.
"For now, we are concentrating on the child. Even now, as I speak, I'm preparing food for her."
Criminologist Nikos Agapinos told Ta Nea: "I believe that any communication between the child and the father will be prohibited.
"The father can claim custody of the child as soon as he is released from prison, but the chances of such a justification are zero."
He said if Anagnostopoulos is convicted and slapped with a substantial prison sentence, "Lydia will be (old enough) to be able to decide on her own" if she wants to be in her father's life.
Anagnostopoulos played the part of the grieving widower for over a month before finally confessing to cops he suffocated Caroline and staged a fake robbery after she threatened to divorce him and take their daughter Lydia.
Just before his arrest, the helicopter pilot was filmed hugging Susan at Caroline's memorial service on Alonissos as he kept up his charade that his wife had been killed by sadistic robbers.
Caroline's distraught parents earlier spoke of their hope for their 11-month-old granddaughter's future in their first interview since her death with the Daily Mail.
"Both Susan and I will spend the rest of our lives making sure that justice is done and ensuring that her little daughter Lydia is brought up with all the advantages that we can give her and that the memories of her mother live forever," David told the publication.
The 78-year-old proudly remembered the young mum who has been "cruelly taken away at the beginning of what was expected to be a wonderful life."
He took comfort in recalling the "many accomplishments of my wonderful daughter".
Caroline was found dead in her family home last month in an upmarket suburb of the Greek capital, Athens, after being tortured and suffocated, with her 11-month-old daughter Lydia placed beside her.