On July 12, 2014, two Massachusetts teenagers, Michelle Carter and her boyfriend Conrad Roy III, were texting about suicide. Specifically, Carter urged Roy to commit suicide. She wrote:
“Just go somewhere in your truck and no one is really out there right now because it’s an awkward time. If you don’t do it now you’re never gonna do it, and you can say you’ll do it tomorrow, but you probably won’t. Tonight? Love you.”
Roy got back in his truck and committed suicide. Almost three years later, Carter was convicted of involuntary manslaughter.
Carter’s conviction was upheld by the Massachusetts Supreme Court on February 6, 2019. She is now serving a 15-month prison sentence. But a few days ago, Carter’s attorneys filed a petition with the Unites States Supreme Court, asking that her conviction be vacated.
Why? Because her conviction violated her rights to free speech. After all, she was just texting.
In the same week that Carter’s lawyers filed in the Supreme Court, HBO aired a documentary about the case called, I Love You, Now, Die.
The documentary includes the statements of Dr. Peter Breggin, a psychiatrist testified for Carter’s defense that she had “involuntary intoxication,” due to her psychiatric medication. Carter had been taking Prozac for years, but had switched to Celexa three months before Roy died.
Another psychiatrist, Dr. Anne Glowinski, disputed the existence of involuntary intoxication.
She urged her boyfriend to die. Now she’s asking the Supreme court to call it free speech, on WashingtonPost.com.