Michelle Carter wanted attention so much that she used her 18-year-old boyfriend as “a pawn in her sick game of life and death,” prosecutors said of the 20-year-old Massachusetts woman who is accused of urging boyfriend Conrad Roy — through text messages — to kill himself.
Carter, who was 17 when Roy died, was craving attention and sympathy and used Roy’s death to get noticed among friends as the “grieving girlfriend,” Bristol Assistant District Attorney Maryclare Flynn said during opening arguments.
Roy killed himself on July 12, 2014, by inhaling carbon monoxide produced by a water pump in his truck. The teen — who had a history of mental illness and had previously attempted suicide — got out of the truck because he was “scared,” but Carter texted him to “get back in,” according to the thousands of text messages the two exchanged during the course of their relationship.
Carter even pretended that Roy had killed himself two days before his suicide, Flynn said.
During what Flynn called a “dry run,” Carter texted her friends that Roy had gone missing, despite talking and texting with Roy at the same time.
She told her friends that it was her fault that he had killed himself with carbon monoxide, Flynn said. Carter even lied to her friends about being in touch with Roy’s mother during this time.
“She begins to get the attention she craved for,” Flynn said in Taunton District Court. “So she has to make it happen, she has to make him kill himself so that she’s not seen as liar. She has to be the grieving girlfriend to get the sympathy and attention she craves.”
Carter is charged with involuntary manslaughter. On Monday, she waived her right to a jury trial, leaving her fate to be decided by a judge.
By Tasneem Nashrulla