Texts appear to show teen urging boyfriend to kill himself

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NEW BEDFORD, Mass. -- A Massachusetts teen accused of convincing her friend to commit suicide faces involuntary manslaughter charges after prosecutors say text messages show she was an accessory.

However, the defense argued Michelle Carter was also troubled and was just trying to help her boyfriend, Conrad Roy.

WCVB reported Carter and her parents, who were in court Monday, did not talk about the thousands of text messages between her and the deceased in July of 2014.

Carter is accused of coercing the 18-year-old him into suicide. In one text she said to Roy, "You said you were gonna do it. I don't get like why you aren't."

Roy responded, "I don't get it either. I don't know."

Conrad Roy

Conrad Ro

The defense argued Carter actually encouraged Roy not to take his own life and that the judge should drop the manslaughter charge because her attorneys claim she was "brainwashed."

“The government is harping, if you will, on her saying when are you going to do it? When are you going to do it?” Joseph Cataldo, Carter's attorney, said. “What they are not harping on are all the times she said don't do it, don't do it.”

Additionally, Carter's attorney argued the texts she sent Roy are protected as free speech.

However, New Bedford Assistant District Attorney Katie Rayburn stated in court that Carter is an accessory because she texted Roy.

“One can be an aider and abettor or an accessory before the fact simply for words,” Rayburn said.

Roy, who was battling depression and previously tried to commit suicide, died of carbon monoxide poisoning at the Fairhaven Shopping Plaza.



Carter, who was on the phone with Roy when it happened, later told a friend she was talking to him while he committed suicide and  heard him cry in pain.

Prosecutors also said she stayed on the phone with Roy to ensure that he was dead.

Roy's family has since read every text.

“Her words are not protected, your honor. Her words are harmful, offensive and likely to cause an immediate, violent act,” Rayburn stated.

The judge could rule on dropping the charges against Carter on her next court date on Oct. 2.

Carter, who is being tried as an adult, could face 20 years in prison if convicted, according to WFXT.

Family Members: Conrad was in 'fragile state'  

Janice Roy, the boy's grandmother, told WBZ earlier this year that Roy had battled depression for "a few years."

“I just felt like blood drained out of me. I don't believe this,” Janice Roy said about learning of her grandson's death and the allegations against Carter.

“His death is my fault," Carter texted a friend. “I was on the phone with him and he got out of the car because it was working and he got scared and I told him to get back in."

Janice Roy said she believed her grandson was manipulated into taking his own life.

“He was in that fragile state, yes. And I think he could have been manipulated not to,” she said.

Roy’s family said he had just earned his captain's license and was helping the family tugboat business.

“I was so proud of him when he got his captain’s license,” Conrad Roy Sr., the boy's grief-stricken farther, told WBZ. “He was very young.”

Police said Carter allegedly later texted a friend the grim details about Roy's death.

“He called me and I heard like muffled sounds and some type of motor running....I think he killed himself," the text read.

#JusticeForConrad trends on social media 

As news of the case spread on social media, the #JusticeForConrad hashtag began to go viral. In fact, it was a trending topic on Facebook for part of the week.


Conrad Roy and Michelle Carter

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  • Noah Salakk

    What a weird PSYCHO B**CH!! He had apparently reconsidered and was looking for a way out by saying
    “It’s already starting to get light outside, I’m gonna go back to sleep.”
    Then this weirdo decided to play God with a person that was already at his Lowest Point by basically saying,
    “You’re a P***y, you’re never gonna do it if you don’t do it now…… DO IT!! DO IT!!!”
    I think she deserves LIFE in Prison..

  • michaela

    This is incredibly sad, my prayers are for his family. On another related note though I think the internet is creating some robot like and emotionally detached young ppl. See in another article i read that their relationship started mainly online and they only met in person 1 or 2 times over a period of 2 years but they talked constantly. The problem is with those relationships is the person feels like they are with someone and getting their peer emotional needs met without the face to face interactions. so it “feels” like a relationship bc they are constantly talking with someone on their smartphone that they always have with them but on the other hand it begins to feel unreal like they are in a relationship with their smart phone and its not a real person on the other side of that screen. then since they are getting their emotional needs met already there is less effort to form deep relationships with the people around them such as in school. See what people have to remember is those of us like myself born in the 80’s or before did not grow up with this internet culture. we have to form relationships date all that in person with school mates etc which is healthy. now that kids as young as elementary have access to this internet platform they are disconnected what really makes ppl human. not reading their words on a phone screen all day. but really loving and connecting and spending time together with neighbors, classmates, etc. also some ppl live for facebook likes. in another article about this they talk about how afterwards she created a facebook event to help deter ppl of suicide. saying, i couldnt help my boyfriend but i want to spread awareness of suicide. when one of his friends shared the event she inboxed him to say “your not taking credit for my idea right?” my point is some ppl will do anything for that bc they are getting their social gratification all online and not even realizing the importance of the fact that there are real ways to gain popularity besides FB, like school activities and such in person and there are real ppl typing the words on the screen. In sum children under 18 shouldnt have smart phones or text or access to any internet device besides closely monitored and briefly. they should not be allowed by parents to have an internet boyfriend or girlfriend. Its really unhealthy .This topic is important and some interventions need to be done. My Master’s is in School Counseling, M.Ed.