DALLAS (CBS/AP) Khandi Busby, a Dallas-area woman who threw her sons off a bridge because she said God told her to, was found not guilty by reason of insanity by a judge Thursday.
Investigators say the boys were ages 6 and 8 when they were injured after being thrown from a Dallas-area highway overpass on March 12, 2008; Busby herself then jumped. She later told investigators that God told her that the only way to save her children from "Satan and the military" was to throw them off the bridge.
State District Judge Carter Thompson said he felt Busby's was not a case where a mother was trying to get rid of her children because they were in the way, according to the Dallas Morning News.
"This is a horrific case, but it is also apparent to the court this woman was suffering from mental illness," Thompson told the court.
Busby had been living with her father the week before the incident, and her family said she is bipolar and had stopped taking her medication. Busby's father, John Turner, testified at her trial that the night before the incident he tried to have her committed but the hospital wouldn't admit her, but suggested an alternative hospital, the paper reported.
Turner said he didn't have enough gas to take her to the other hospital and, because it wasn't deemed an emergency, the ambulance wouldn't take her, so he had to go home. He told the judge he stayed up all night trying to calm his daughter, the Morning News reported.
The next morning he borrowed money from a neighbor to get enough gas to take Busby to the hospital. It was when they stopped at the gas station and Turner got out of the car to pay that Busby took off with the boys to the overpass, the paper reported.
Turner, who watched helplessly as his daughter threw his grandsons, and then herself, off the bridge, cried when the judge read the sentence and said he hoped his daughter would get the help she needed.
Turner said the boys - now 7 and 9 - are doing better but are still dealing with psychological problems from what happened. Their injuries were not life-threatening.
The boys remain in foster care, but Turner said he visits them.
Busby will go to a state mental hospital for evaluation. The length of her stay will be determined by doctors' recommendations, which the court will review.