Opening statements will begin Tuesday morning in the trial of Michelle Carter, who is accused of encouraging and contributing towards the 2014 suicide of her boyfriend, Conrad Roy. Both Carter and Roy were high school students at the time. Carter was 17, Roy was 18. Prosecutors allege that Carter was aware that Roy wanted to kill himself, and that in the days before Roy’s death, Carter sent him text messages encouraging and even pressuring him to go through with it. Watch live coverage of the trial in the player above. The trial is scheduled to begin at 9:00 am ET.
Prosecutors claim that messages Carter sent to Roy include, “You always say you’re gonna do it, but you never do. I just want to make sure tonight is the real thing,” and, “You’re finally going to be happy in heaven.”
Carter’s defense attorney, Joseph Cataldo, previously claimed that Carter initially tried to convince Roy not to kill himself, and that she was later “brainwashed” by him to participate in a suicide pact. Cataldo also disputed the legitimacy of punishing Carter for her speech. There are reportedly thousands of text messages that the prosecution could potentially introduce as evidence during the trial.
Roy died of carbon monoxide poisoning on July 13, 2014. Prosecutors allege that he was in communication with Carter in the moments before his death. They say that when Roy began feeling the effects of the gas, he exited the truck he was in, only for Carter to convince to go back inside.
Carter is charged with involuntary manslaughter and faces up to 20 years in prison.
[Image via WCVB screengrab]