Plainville woman found guilty of manslaughter in texting suicide case

Michelle Carter to be sentenced in August

David Tanklefsky
June 16, 2017 - 3:23 pm

The 20-year-old Plainville woman accused of urging her boyfriend to commit suicide three years ago was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter Friday morning in a Taunton courtroom.

Judge Lawrence Moniz found Michelle Carter guilty in connection with the suicide death of Conrad Roy the III in Fairhaven on June 12, 2014. Moniz said Carter is guilty because she told Roy to get back into his truck, which was filling with carbon monoxide, after he had expressed reservations and didn't tell anyone or call for help. Moniz said ordering him to get back in the truck was wanton and reckless conduct.

Texts and conversations between Carter and Roy were at the center of the landmark case. Carter's defense team had argued her communnications were free speech. A psychiatrist for the defense said Carter had been under the effects of prescription drugs in the lead up to Roy's suicide.

Judge Moniz ruled that although Roy had attempted suicide in the past, he had stopped each time and gotten help. 

The judge ruled on the case because Carter had previously requested a bench trial rather than one in front of a jury. 

Carter is now free on bail. She could face a maximum sentence of 20 years in jail.

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