Two days before he stabbed his four-year old son to death Dave Janzow posted an image of him with his two kids on Facebook.
“Unforgettable moments in a frog pond,” he wrote.
The image showing a fit, healthy father with his two sons was nothing out of the ordinary.
Just a regular dad with his kids. Nothing in it foretold how he would stab his son to death in his ute, how his wife, Julia would ring police in a state of panic saying she had concerns for her son’s welfare at 8.30am or that his father had taken him out in their car. No signs that he would murder him in a frenzy.
Nothing in this simple image foretells how four-year old Luca would die a violent and gruesome death and his father, who loved him, was charged with his murder and then ultimately found not guilty.
At the time it was simply a Facebook photo, like thousands of others we see when we scroll through.
“Unforgettable moments in a frog pond.”
At the time it was unforgettable, but its now one of the last pictures ever taken of Luca Janzow.
Yesterday Luca’s father, David Janzow, 37, was found not guilty of his son’s murder after a judge found Janzow was “mentally incompetent” at the time of the killing.
The court heard during his trial that the then 36-year old landscaper from Adelaide had taken his son Luca out for a drive with the intent on killing him as he wanted to “save Luca from what was to come”.
Documents tendered to the court said Janzow was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and had a long history of depression.
The ABC reports that Janzow pulled up at a secluded location with a nice view of the Adelaide hills and stabbed his son. He then tried to stab himself in the neck before driving to police patrolling a traffic incident nearby and telling them “I need help, I’ve murdered my son.”
As paramedics treated Janzow he told them: “I’m a psychopath with mental health problems. I stabbed my son with a Leatherman [hunting knife]”.
The court heard that there was no history of domestic violence at the home of the family in Adelaide’s Eastern suburbs. After his arrest Janzow, who ran a landscaping company, was described by friends as “an everyday nice guy.”
The family a “regular family.”
In her victim impact statement tendered to the court yesterday a heartbroken Julia Trinne, who now lives interstate with the couple’s other son, said that she had no indication her husband was capable of what he did.
“Dave became acutely unwell in a short period of time with absolutely tragic consequences,” she said.
“There was no warning. There was no suggestion any of us were in danger.
“I loved Dave right up until this terrible tragedy. In most other circumstances I would’ve been by his side no matter what, I would’ve worn my wedding ring with pride until my last days but now I cannot.
“A living nightmare does not come close to what I have been going through.
“In time my hope is that this tragedy will bring understanding and awareness to mental health.
The court heard that Janzow told a psychiatrist after he was arrested: “I knew this was bad, but everyone would be better off. I knew murder was bad but I just had to get rid of us because there was no good bone in a psychopath.”