Judge faces legal quagmire in teen texting suicide trial

A conviction could set a legal precedent in Massachusetts

FILE - In this Aug. 24, 2015 file photo, Michelle Carter listens to defense attorney Joseph P. Cataldo argue for an involuntary manslaughter charge against her to be dismissed at Juvenile Court in New Bedford, Mass. Carter is charged with involuntary manslaughter for allegedly pressuring Conrad Roy III, 18, of Fairhaven, Mass., to commit suicide on July 13, 2014. Judge Lawrence Moniz is deliberating Carter's fate following a jury-waived trial that provided a disturbing look at teen depression and suicide. It is not clear when the judge will issue his verdict. (Peter Pereira/The New Bedford Standard Times via AP, Pool, File)

BOSTON (AP) — A juvenile court judge finds himself at the center of a legal quagmire in a case that provides a disturbing look at teen depression and suicide.

Judge Lawrence Moniz is deliberating the fate of Michelle Carter. The Massachusetts woman is charged with involuntary manslaughter in the 2014 suicide of her boyfriend, Carter Roy III.

Prosecutors allege that Carter caused Roy’s death by relentlessly badgering him with text messages urging him to kill himself.

Carter’s lawyers say Roy had made up his mind to take his own life and Carter did not cause his death.

The case is being closely watched in the legal community. If the judge convicts Carter of manslaughter, it could set a legal precedent in Massachusetts. The state does not have a law against encouraging someone to kill themselves.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s