After a seven-day bench trial, Michelle Carter has been found guilty of involuntary manslaughter for urging her boyfriend, Conrad Roy III, to commit suicide via text message. Massachusetts Judge Lawrence Moniz sat with the case for two days before handing down his landmark decision on Friday in a packed Bristol County Juvenile Court.
Carter’s attorney will appeal the judge’s decision, and she will not start her sentence until the appeals are completed.
She is not to have any contact with any of the Roy family or anyone involved in the trial.
Today, Carter’s defense attorney asked for a sentence of 5 years of supervised probation, with the prosecuting attorney asking for a sentence of 7-12 years in state prison, saying “Her actions killed Conrad Roy III. She ended his life to better her own.’’
“Michelle Carter exploited my son’s weaknesses and used him as a pawn in her own well-being,” said Roy’s father in a statement, “She has not shown any remorse.”
On June 16, 2017, Michelle Carter, 20, was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter after texting her boyfriend, Conrad Roy III, to suicide.
“just do it babe”
Roy, 18, poisoned himself by inhaling carbon monoxide in his pickup truck in 2014, following hundreds of text messages about suicide shared between the two, and a phone call in which Carter told him to “Get back in the fuckin car.”
“Hang yourself, jump off a building, stab yourself,” Carter wrote in just one of her texts to Roy.
Read the rest of the messages she sent him here.
Tried as a youthful offender, Carter faced up to 20 years in prison. However, because she was 17 at the time of the crime and allowed to remain free on bail following her conviction, experts believed she’d receive a light sentencing with little to no jail time — the focus being on rehabilitation over punishment.
During the trial, controversial psychiatrist Peter Breggin testified on behalf of Carter, saying she could not be held responsible due to the side effects of her antidepressant, Celexa. However, the prosecution said her crime was intentional: “A desire for attention and feeling of being trapped,” after she’d “promised friends he was missing.”
Michelle could also have been committed to a Department of Youth Services facility until her 21st birthday on Aug. 11, or given a sentencing of probation, among other things.
“This court finds that instructing Mr. Roy to get back in the truck constituted wanton and reckless conduct,” Judge Moniz said on June 16th, adding today, “There will be no emotionalism in my determination for this sentencing.”
Roy’s family weighed in on the sentencing prior to today, with her Aunt, Kim Bozzi, saying Carter “Should Be Kept Away From Society,” and that she would ask presiding Judge Moniz to give Carter the full 20 years she could potentially be served.
“Take away the spotlight she so desperately craves,” said Bozzie, “20 years may seem extreme but it’s 20 more than Conrad will ever have.”