Mum: How could I kill my sons ... I loved them so much

A woman who killed her toddler son and almost killed his baby brother tearfully denied to police that she “knew what you were doing,” a jury heard yesterday.

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 24th May 2022, 8:21 am
Antrim Court
Antrim Court

The Antrim Crown Court jury of seven men and five women also heard the 41-year-old mother claimed her last memory before waking up in a hospital intensive care unit was being in the playroom with the two boys “their wee faces playing happily”.

The transcripts of the defendant’s police interviews were read to the jury and they heard how detectives put to her that in that space of time, she drugged the two boys, drugged herself, texted her fiancée, penned several notes, took the boys and a knife upstairs to the bedroom and stabbed them in their necks and abdomen in a “calculated way”.

“You murdered your child and attempted to murder the other and it’s only through medical intervention that he was saved,” said the detective, who asked her directly: “Did you intend to kill the boys?”

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“No, no, I would not even have dreamt of it,” she told police.

“Do you accept that you killed your son?” the officer demanded to know, but she told them: “How can I – I loved them so much.”

The mother of four is on trial accused of murdering her son who was two months short of his third birthday and the attempted murder of his 11-month-old brother on March 2 2020.

The jury has already heard harrowing evidence the “highly qualified nurse” put multiple morphine pain relief patches on the children before stabbing them numerous times in the bedroom of the family home in Magheramorne outside Larne, leaving “suicide notes”, that she did not want them to “experience pain”, and “I’m taking my kids with me because I can’t leave them with their dad”.

Both boys sustained stab wounds to their necks and abdomens but the oldest victim died as a result of a neck wound which severed an artery and a vein, the blade penetrating so deep that it touched his spine, while his little brother came within millimetres of the same fate and had to undergo emergency surgery.

It is the Crown case that when she stabbed them, she either intended to kill them or at least intended to cause her infant sons really serious harm.

But the defence argue that at the time she was suffering from an abnormality of mind which substantially impaired her thinking, decision making and perception of consequences.

Interviewed by police four times the accused, who was accompanied by her solicitor and a social worker throughout, said her last memories of the Monday morning were of her older children leaving for school, playing with the boys in the playroom and of calling her fiancé “to ask if we could talk”.

“He just yelled at me for phoning him [at work],” she told investigators, further claiming that her next memory was “like I was being pulled through a tunnel” before waking up in hospital.

The jury has already heard evidence from the boys’ father that shortly after his fiancée rang to ask if they could talk and he suggested leaving the issue until he was home from work, he received a text message saying “f*** you” but within minutes of that, she sent him a series of texts in quick succession saying “I’m sorry … I killed the bots, and I’m dying too; the bots; the bots; the boys.”

In court yesterday the jury heard that the defendant told police she could remember the first phone call but not the second or the text messages she sent.

She also told police that while she remembered beginning to write notes while sitting with the boys in the playroom, she couldn’t remember the full extent of them but did confirm it was her handwriting on them.

The jury heard that amongst them, the defendant had written how “I’m doing this to hurt the ones who hurt me and who are continuing to hurt me; I’m taking my kids with me because I can’t leave them with their dad; he is a horrible person; doesn’t have any empathy; please understand I LOVE my kids; I REALLY don’t want to do this; I don’t want to do this but I feel I have no choice”.

Other comments within the notes outlined how she wanted her “assets” to go to her two older children when she died, that she was giving medication to the boys because she “didn’t want them to experience pain” and how she was drinking alcohol and taking medication because “I don’t want to feel completely torn apart when I am taking the life of my own kids”.

She maintained, however, that she had no memory of writing the series of Post-it Notes.

The trial continues.