Gilles de Rais rarely left a child alive for more than one evening’s pleasure, Poitou claimed. Many times they were dealt mortal wounds before de Rais sodomized them. He would then take his pleasure as the child died. Occasionally, he would perform a sex act with a dead child.
In his own confession, Gilles testified that “when the children were dead he kissed them and those who had the most handsome limbs and heads he held up to admire them, and had their bodies cruelly cut open and took delight at the sight of their inner organs; and very often when the children were dying he sat on their stomachs and took pleasure in seeing them die and laughed…”
An accomplice in many of the crimes, Etienne Corrillaut, known as Poitou, testified that de Rais then raped the child as it was hung from a hook by the neck. Before the victim died, Gilles took the child down, comforted them, repeated the rape and either killed the child himself or had the child slain.