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Verdict Watch: Trial of Michelle Carter, Accused of Encouraging Suicide of Teen Boyfriend

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Both sides have presented their cases and delivered closing arguments in the trial of Michelle Carter, who is accused of encouraging and contributing towards the 2014 suicide of her boyfriend, Conrad Roy. Both Carter and Roy were high school students at the time. Carter was 17, Roy was 18. Prosecutors allege that Carter was aware that Roy wanted to kill himself, and that in the days before Roy’s death, Carter sent him text messages encouraging and even pressuring him to go through with it. Carter has waived her right to a jury trial, so Judge Lawrence Moniz is currently deliberating. When he reaches a verdict, he will notify the clerk, and will announce his decision in court the following day. Watch the announcement live when it happens on the LawNewz Network.

During closing arguments, prosecutor Katie Rayburn tried to hit home just how much Carter had allegedly pressured Roy into killing himself, to the point where Roy was apologizing for not having gone through with it yet. During the trial, many text messages between the two were read in court as examples of how Carter was encouraging Roy’s suicide.

Defense attorney Joseph Cataldo insisted that Roy acted of his own volition and that Carter was dragged into his suicidal plans. A defense witness testified that Carter had problems of her own, and suffered from side effects of antidepressants, which can result in suicidal thoughts. Cataldo argued that Roy suggested a suicide pact like Romeo and Juliet, and that Carter–impaired by the drugs–believed at the time that suicide would help Roy.

Carter is charged with involuntary manslaughter and faces up to 20 years in prison.

[Image via screengrab]

 

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