BLACKSTONE (CBS) – After eight days of testimony, closing arguments were delivered in the trial of Erika Murray, a Blackstone mother accused of killing two infants and severely neglecting her other children.
The defense argued that Murray is too mentally ill to be held responsible, while the prosecution said there is strong evidence of neglect and malice.
"It is a tragedy for all involved, but it's not a murder," said defense attorney Keith Halpern.
Prosecutor Christopher Hodgens pointed out the home was condemned by the board of health.
State police discovered the bodies while performing a wellness check. They say the house was full of trash and infested with insects and rodents. Prosecutors also argued Murray knew what she was doing and lived a life of secrecy.
"She disposed of bodies and disposed of them not in a loving way. She dumped them in a closet," Hodgens said.
Defense attorney Halpern said Murray was mentally ill and was oblivious to the horrific squalor she and her kids were living in.
"When you look inside the house of squalor, you don't find evidence of a murder. You find suffering and fear and abuse and mental illness," Halpern said
Helpern also argued that Murray believed she was a good mother and suffers from abuse of her boyfriend Ray Rivera.
Judge Janet Kenton Walker will now take all the evidence and make a decision in regards to Murray's sentence. She will schedule a hearing. However, there is no indication as to how long that will take.
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