Friday, 16 June 2017

Guilty verdict in trial of woman who texted boy to commit suicide

quote [ A Massachusetts woman charged with involuntary manslaughter because of text messages prosecutors said cajoled a teen boy into commiting suicide was found guilty Friday. ]

Next comes the sentencing. She could get up to 20 years.

Followup to http://www.sensibleendowment.com/entry.php/9528
[SFW] [crime & punishment] [+8 Good]
[by mechanical contrivance@3:44pmGMT]

Comments

5th Earth said @ 9:29pm GMT on 16th Jun [Score:1 Informative]
“This court finds that instructing Mr. Roy to get back in the truck constituted wanton and reckless conduct, by Ms. Carter creating a situation where there is a high degree of likelihood that substantial harm will result to Mr. Roy.”

The conclusion is that 1: He would not have died without the intervention of his girlfriend, and 2: Given his history of mental health issues, of which she was fully aware, there was a reasonable expectation her actions would be harmful. He died as a result. That's manslaughter.
Bob Denver said @ 9:20am GMT on 17th Jun
But what about HER mental health issues?
I'm not defending her actions...she definitely needs to atone for those. I'm only saying that there might be more going on than what has been revealed.
5th Earth said @ 11:01am GMT on 17th Jun [Score:1 Insightful]
Well, there's two layers there. She's not anywhere near so crazy as to be found innocent by reason of insanity, so by all means she should be convicted. As to her having some sort of mental health issue, I think that's arguably true of anyone who commits a severe crime. The fact that she likely won't get treatment is a failure of the penal system, not the court system.
rylex said[1] @ 4:02pm GMT on 16th Jun
Fuck.

This verdict means I could be tried in court for my past actions.

not sure how i feel bout this one yet
cb361 said @ 4:18pm GMT on 16th Jun
Whatever the verdict, it would be depressing.
foobar said @ 2:16am GMT on 17th Jun
...

You've talked people into suicide?
rylex said[1] @ 2:20am GMT on 17th Jun [Score:1 WTF]
i suggested it and they attempted.

edit: guess I should add that I also made compelling arguments about why they should
mwooody said @ 3:33am GMT on 17th Jun
I'm so glad you clarified; I was about to think you were a horrible person.
rylex said @ 4:40am GMT on 17th Jun
I know I'm a horrible person at times.

I don't try to hide this one bit.

The only difference between me and everyone else is I freely admit I suck sometimes
foobar said @ 3:50am GMT on 17th Jun
...

Not sure what to say there.
jsabin69 said @ 6:28pm GMT on 16th Jun
I don't find this a good thing, but I haven't read the case file. I am generally a proponent of free choice in suicide, so the thought of a girlfriend encouraging a boyfriend to commit suicide doesn't strike me as particularly warranting of societal punishment. Suicide is not an easy choice, but for some I believe it is a rational choice that they should be free to make. If he wanted to end his life without her input I don't find it troubling for her to give him support to finish that decision. But, I didn't read the actual case so I'll reserve judgement. I still think a lot of this has to do with the societal taboo of suicide in general regardless.

But, that taboo isn't particularly surprising given that society depends on our continued existence and participation in it regardless of how miserable that existence may be.
HoZay said @ 6:55pm GMT on 16th Jun [Score:1 WTF]
I think he changed his mind and she insisted.
mechanical contrivance said @ 6:57pm GMT on 16th Jun [Score:1 WTF]
Texts show he wavered in his plan to follow through with the suicide, at one point getting out of his pick-up truck. The court heard that Ms Carter, who was then 17, replied: "Get the f*** back in the car."
Bob Denver said @ 7:26pm GMT on 16th Jun
I'm not sure about this. That she was/is an evil thing is beyond doubt. But, you either have freedom of speech or you don't. This sets a dangerous precedent where a darkly-toned jibe, meant in jest, might have to be defended e.g. I jokingly tell a buddy to go play in traffic and he gets hit by a car whilst crossing the road. I might find myself in court defending that.
Bleb said @ 7:28pm GMT on 16th Jun [Score:1 Informative]
Freedom of speech is not freedom from consequence.
Bob Denver said @ 7:45pm GMT on 16th Jun
I agree. We must take responsibility for our words. What I think I'm saying is that there needs to be a separate category but I don't know what it is. Manslaughter isn't it. There seems to be evidence that the girl isn't the most mentally-balanced person.
jsabin69 said @ 11:56pm GMT on 16th Jun
i guess this is my biggest concern...we have way too many "crimes" already and we already have a gut reaction to lock up everyone who doesn't conform; we need smarter justice not more justice and at the end of the day we just don't need to criminalize every asshole behavior out there.
jsabin69 said @ 11:55pm GMT on 16th Jun
actually it is freedom from government consequence...thought there are some limits that can legally be placed upon said freedom.
mechanical contrivance said @ 7:38pm GMT on 16th Jun [Score:1 Insightful]
If you tell your buddy to go play in traffic and he actually does it, he's a nut and you haven't committed any crime. If, after he runs out of the street and back to the safety of the sidewalk, you then demand that he get back out there until he gets run over, you may have then committed a crime.
Bob Denver said @ 7:46pm GMT on 16th Jun
Fair enough.
foobar said @ 2:20am GMT on 17th Jun
Oh fuck right off. You don't have an absolute freedom of speech. You'll be thrown on the docket for slander, libel, incitement to right, et cetera, et fucking cetera.
Bob Denver said @ 9:17am GMT on 17th Jun
Had a few or just in a pissy mood? My point was that if we criminalise expression, particularly of those at an age where hormones are rampant and, frankly, judgement just sucks, it's a slippery slope. Was what she did wrong? Absolutely! Does she deserve the manslaughter charge? I'm not so sure. The law cannot exist to exact revenge.
foobar said @ 3:47pm GMT on 17th Jun
We criminalize, or otherwise punish all kinds of expression. Why are you wanting to carve out an exemption for murdering people?

Frankly, I don't want to hear this ridiculous right wing nonsense that somehow rights are being violated by enforcing the law on horrible things.
Bob Denver said @ 4:28pm GMT on 17th Jun
Right wing?!! Moi? You really don't know me very well (well, of course, but...). I'm about as far left centrist as you can get...apart from being a monarchist. I absolutely believe that it is the duty of the state to take care of its citizens when they cannot take care of themselves. I believe that it is the purpose of the criminal courts to serve to lead the criminal to understanding and to rehabilitate.

You've latched on to one thing that I wrote—freedom of speech. Let's forget that. Once that is done, your position appears far more right wing than mine—right down the alley of the "tough on crime" sentiments bandied about in the USA.

She is charged with involuntary manslaughter, not murder. She did not wield a weapon so the murder charge, as satisfying as it might be, does not fit. What she did was completely voluntary—that is why everyone is outraged— so that part isn't true. And finally, the young man killed himself and his death must be deemed a suicide, regardless of the circumstances.

What she did was cruel and callous—she can be defined as a cold-hearted bitch by what she did. The point that stood out to me was that she wanted to be a grieving girlfriend. That points out a personality disorder at very least and perhaps a serious one. If her actions were biochemical, that needs to be addressed.

Foobar, the girl needs to be punished and rehabilitated. But, there must also be some sort of quest for understanding because these sort of exhortations (to suicide) are actually quite common. My blood chills when I talk to my nieces about what they encounter online in their progressive. liberal AF, school. Because they've shoehorned her actions into the manslaughter framework, that will set a precedent that I believe is dangerous and won't fix the problem.
foobar said @ 5:57pm GMT on 17th Jun
What framework would you prefer? The charge seems simply the prosecutor selecting what they think they can get a conviction on.
Bob Denver said @ 8:13pm GMT on 17th Jun [Score:1 Underrated]
I don't know. I'm not American. It seems to me that there are incitement laws and possibly others that might apply. And you're right...it does seem that they chose a charge that they believed would stick. It's the reasoning behind that that concerns me—that the emotion, the outrage would make that the most viable charge.

I don't trust authority, particularly where politics are concerned. Given how the law has been twisted and manipulated (Citizens United etc.) and the fact that it takes a metric fucktonne of money to defend oneself against the feeblest of charges, I worry that this precedent will evolve into even harsher criminalisation of legitimate protest speech and political dissent. It's not like it hasn't happened before.
foobar said @ 10:43pm GMT on 17th Jun
That seems a bit unlikely.

Going for involuntary manslaughter keeps them from having to prove she intended he die.
Bob Denver said @ 12:40am GMT on 18th Jun
You have more knowledge and faith than I do. Well, time will tell.

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