NEW BEDFORD, Mass. — A new hashtag #JusticeForConrad has surfaced in support of a teen who was allegedly coerced into committing suicide by his own friend.
Michelle Carter, 18, faces involuntary manslaughter charges after prosectors say text messages between herself and Conrad Roy III appear to show that she was an accessory.
Authorities say Carter, a former senior at King Philip Regional High School, urged Roy, also 18, to take his own life.
Roy sat in an idling truck in July of 2014, succumbing to carbon monoxide poisoning. In the police report obtained by The Sun Chronicle, investigators went through Roy’s cellphone and found texts from Carter.
The Standard-Times reported that Carter’s attorney Joseph Cataldo, said Carter originally tried to keep Roy from killing himself — before encouraging him, because she was “brainwashed.”
One text from Carter reads,
“You can’t think about it. You just have to do it. You said you were going to do it. Like I don’t get why you aren’t.”
Roy responded, “I don’t get it either. I don’t know.”
Authorities say Roy text Carter in the moments leading up to his death, saying he was “scared and didn’t want to leave his family.” Roy even got out of the truck, to which Carter replied in a text, “get back in.”
The attorney told WFXT that the texts are acts of free speech and not a criminal act.
Carter’s next court date is Oct. 2. If tried as an adult, Carter could faces up to 20 years in prison.
As news spread about the case, the hashtag #JusticeForConrad began to trend in support of the 18-year-old who took his own life.