The mother of toddler Julius Czapla has described how she feels “his fear and pain every day” after the youngster’s father was found guilty of his murder.
Patrycja Szczesniak said the suffering and pain will stay with her for the rest of her life, adding: “If only I could only turn back time to have you in my arms again my child”.
Lukasz Czapla, 41, shot, stabbed and smothered two-year-old Julius at his home in Edinburgh in November 2020 to get back at Ms Szczesniak for embarking on a new relationship.
The High Court in Edinburgh heard how Ms Szczesniak had split from Czapla in June that year but was happy to allow him to look after Julius.
In a statement released through Police Scotland, Ms Szczesniak said: “Despite the breakup with Julius’ dad, I wanted him to have contact with our son.
“I never stopped him seeing Julius. Julek loved him like every child loves their dad. He trusted him, he trusted him completely.
“Julius was murdered only for revenge. His dad wanted me to suffer, he succeeded and achieved his goal, at the cost of my beloved little boy’s life.
‘That day, the world stopped, not only for me but also for my mother and my sister.’Patrycja Szczesniak
“If only I knew what was going to happen. I would have never thought he could do this to my child.
“He was only two-and-a-half.
“Every day I think about Julius. I can’t imagine what his little, helpless heart felt that night and I feel his fear and pain every day.
“He was part of me, part of my heart and soul.
“I wish I could hug him, play with him and watch him grow.
“Every day I ask myself why there is so much evil in this world, why the innocent have to suffer.
“He not only took Julius life but my life too.
“That day, the world stopped, not only for me but also for my mother and my sister.”
On the night of November 20, 2020, Ms Szczesniak told Czapla that she was seeing somebody else in a text message.
This prompted him to send her a series of bizarre texts asking her about her new partner and her sex life.
The court heard how Ms Szczesniak refused to respond to the messages.
Czapla, who had spent the evening drinking beer, downed anti depressants with wine. He then decided to shoot Julius three times in the head with a gas powered air pistol.
Three ball bearings were later recovered from his head.
He then stabbed the toddler with a metal skewer before smothering him with a pillow leaving Julius lying lifeless in his house in the Muirhouse area of Edinburgh,
The court heard how Ms Szczesniak then discovered her son’s remains the following day.
‘Juliuszek left us the most beautiful memories that will remain in our hearts forever.’Patrycja Szczesniak
Ms Szczesniak said: “There was so much we wanted to show him but this chance was brutally taken from us and now the only thing we can do is to prey for the highest possible punishment.
“We want to believe in the justice system and that justice will be served, although I know there is no sentence that will bring my angel back to life.
“Czapla should not have the right to any defence and we will fight to ensure that monster never leaves prison.
“My suffering and my pain will stay with me for the rest of my life. But the unconditional love I have for my baby; my dearest child Juliusz will never end.
“My family, friends and l will miss him dearly and we will suffer his loss until the end of our days.
“Juliuszek left us the most beautiful memories that will remain in our hearts forever.”
Ms Szczesniak described Julius as a “very happy child” who “lit up the place wherever he showed up”.
“He could put a smile on anyone’s face and always looked forward to calls with his grandma and auntie,” she said.
“They managed to build a strong relationship despite the distance in miles between us and enjoyed every minute they had together.
“It is breaking our hearts that we are no longer able to take his hand and lead him through life.
“To watch him enjoy riding his bike and eating his favourite ice cream.
“Listen to his giggling and laughing and being amazed by the things he learned every day.”
On Wednesday, jurors took three hours to conclude that Czapla was indeed guilty of murder.
This prompted Judge Lord Beckett to jail Czapla for a minimum of 23 years. He will be released once the parole board consider he no longer poses a threat to public safety.
The judge also imposed concurrent sentences for road traffic and drugs offences.
‘Julius was a bright, happy young boy and his loss in such horrendous circumstances has been devastating for his mother and his family.’Detective inspector Bob Williamson, Police Scotland
Detective inspector Bob Williamson, of Police Scotland’s Major Investigation Team, said: “Julius was a bright, happy young boy and his loss in such horrendous circumstances has been devastating for his mother and his family.
“Lukasz Czapla is now facing the consequences of his actions. The outcome of this case will never bring Julius back but it does bring this aspect to a close.
“Julius’ family have understandably asked for privacy during this difficult time.
“I would like to thank the local community and our dedicated team of officers, along with our partner agencies, who assisted throughout the duration of the investigation.”