BOSTON – The highest court in Massachusetts will hear the appeal of a young woman convicted of involuntary manslaughter for sending her suicidal boyfriend, a barrage of text messages urging him to kill himself when they were both teenagers.
The Supreme court told lawyers Wednesday, weighs in on the case of Michelle Carter, who was sentenced last year to 15 months in prison for the 2014 death of 18-year-old Conrad Roy III. Carter was 17 when Roy was found dead of carbon monoxide poisoning in his truck.
Carter was allowed to remain out of jail until her appeal to the courts have been exhausted.
Carter’s lawyers claim the case will be precedent for who can be prosecuted for encouraging a suicide with words alone.”
“Carter is the first suspect to be convicted for the killing of a person who is his own life, although they are neither on the condition that the deadly drugs, nor was present when the suicide occurred,” her lawyers said in court documents. “Nothing in the law of Massachusetts made it clear to 17-year-old Carter, or anyone else, that such circumstances could constitute involuntary manslaughter,” they said.
The judge who sentenced Carter she showed “wanton and reckless conduct” under the manslaughter statute when she told Roy to “go back”, after he climbed out of his truck filled with carbon monoxide and told her that he was scared.
Carter, the lawyer argued during the trial that Carter had initially tried to talk to Roy, and encouraged him to get help. Her lawyer said Roy was determined to kill himself and nothing Carter did could change that.