Michelle Carter, 20, was charged with manslaughter for sending her “vulnerable” boyfriend text messages encouraging him to kill himself. Michelle was charged over the 2014 death of 18-year-old Conrad Roy III. Conrad was found dead of carbon monoxide poisoning in his pickup truck. After his death, text messages Michelle, who was 17 at the time, sent to Conrad were discovered and released by prosecutors.
In one, she allegedly wrote:
“The time is right and you’re ready, you just need to do it!”
Days before the suicide, prosecutors say Michelle wrote:
“Don’t be scared. You’re finally to be happy in Heaven. When are you going to do it? Stop ignoring the question? You can’t keep pushing it off" Prosecutors claimed Michelle texted Conrad.
The court heard that Michelle and Conrad exchanged more than 20,000 text messages, with more than 1,000 of those messages sent in the days leading up to Conrad’s death. Dozens of those text messages were encouraging him to take his own life. Michelle’s lawyer said that his client's texts to Conrad are protected by free speech. He also said that Conrad was depressed and had previously tried to kill himself. He argued that Michelle tried repeatedly to talk him out of committing suicide and only began to support the “suicide” plan when it became clear he would not change his mind. In the hour before his death, it is claimed he was on the phone with Michelle for 47 minutes, at one point telling her he was getting out of the truck because he feared “it wasn’t working.”
Prosecutor MaryClare Flynn was not convinced by that argument and said:
“The car was filling up, and he was scared. She told him to get back in the car.”
Michelle has waived her right to trial by jury. She broke down in tears as she came before the Taunton Trial Court, Massachusetts, as she took the stand to tell Judge Lawrence Moniz she was happy for him to decide the case.