Society

Michelle Carter Found Guilty In Suicide Texts Case

| by Kathryn Schroeder

The Massachusetts woman on trial for sending her boyfriend dozens of text messages that allegedly urged him to kill himself has been found guilty of involuntary manslaughter.

In 2014, when now 20-year-old Michelle Carter was a teenager, she sent texts and had phone calls with her boyfriend Conrad Roy III, then 17, that allegedly provoked him to commit suicide, according to CBS News. 

"You're finally going to be happy in heaven. No more pain. It's okay to be scared and it's normal. I mean, you're about to die," she wrote in one text.

Roy filled his pickup truck with carbon monoxide in a store parking lot and when he excited the vehicle, Carter told him to "get back in," prosecutors said.

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"You can't think about it. You just have to do it. You said you were gonna do it. Like I don't get why you aren't," Carter wrote in a text to Roy the day he died.

Carter was charged in Roy's death and waived her right to a jury trial. The case was then given to Juvenile Court Judge Lawrence Moniz for a decision.

On June 16, Moniz delivered a guilty verdict for involuntary manslaughter. He said that Roy took "significant actions of his own" to take his own life, but Carter instructing him to get back in the truck constituted wanton and reckless conduct. Carter failed to get Roy help even though she knew he was in the truck, the judge said.

"She called no one and finally she did not issue a simple additional instruction -- get out of the truck," Moniz said.

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Carter cried when Moniz read the verdict while others in the courtroom sobbed.

Roy's father, Conrad Roy Jr., said, "This has been a very tough time for our family. We'd like to just process this verdict."

The ACLU of Massachusetts condemned the verdict, stating it "exceeds the limits of our criminal laws and violates free speech protections guaranteed by the Massachusetts and U.S. Constitutions."

On CBS News' "48 Hours," Roy's mother, Lynn Roy, said she does not believe Carter has a conscience. 

"I think she needs to be held responsible for her actions 'cause she knew exactly what she was doing and what she said," she told correspondent Erin Moriarty.

Carter's sentencing has been set for August 3. Moniz ruled she can remain free on bail, but has prohibited her from having any contact with Roy's family and from leaving the state.

Lynn Roy said she will live with the pain of losing her son forever.

"It was a shock. It was an absolute shock," she said.

Sources: CBS News/Associated Press, CBS News / Photo credit: Hamza Butt/Flickr

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