- Girlfriend, then 17, sent boyfriend (18) text messages instructing and encouraging him to take his own life in 2014.
- Her attorneys argue the texts were free speech protected by the First Amendment and didn’t cause the boyfriend to kill himself.
Conrad Roy, who was battling with depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts, was seeking help but was instead encouraged by his narcissistic 18-year-old girlfriend Michelle Carter to finish the job.
When Conrad started to worry about the consequences of his suicide, Michelle promised it was not a big deal. “Everyone will be sad for a while, but they will get over it and move on. They won’t be stuck in the depression” she wrote.
CONRAD: How was your day?
CARTER: When are you doing it?
CONRAD: Since you don’t get your snapchat anymore, I sent them to you.
CARTER: (Smiley face) My day was okay. How was yours?
CARTER: That’s great. What did you do?
CONRAD: Ended up going to work for a little bit and then just looked stuff up.
CARTER: When are you gonna do it? Stop ignoring the question
Several times Conrad hesitated, screaming deep inside for help, but Michelle was determined to be a grieving girlfriend, getting all the attention she craved.
“Always smile and yeah, you have to just do it [suicide]” Michelle wrote, when Conrad had doubts. “You have everything you need. There is no way you can fail. Tonight is the night. It’s now or never.”
The morning of July 12, at 4: 19 AM
CARTER: You can’t think about it. You just have to do it. You said you were gonna do it. Like I don’t get why you aren’t.
CONRAD: I don’t get it either. I don’t know.
CARTER: So I guess you aren’t gonna do it then. All that for nothing. I’m just confused. Like you were so ready and determined.
CONRAD: I am gonna eventually. I really don’t know what I’m waiting for but I have everything lined up.
CARTER: No, you’re not, Conrad. Last night was it. You kept pushing it off and you say you’ll do it, but you never do. It’s always gonna be that way if you don’t take action. You’re just making it harder on yourself by pushing it off. You just have to do it. Do you want to do it now?
CONRAD: Is it too late? I don’t know. It’s already light outside. I’m gonna go back too sleep. Love you. I’ll text you tomorrow.
CARTER: No. It’s probably the best time now because everyone is sleeping. 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.
CONRAD: Thank you.
CARTER: For what. Are you awake?
CARTER: Are you gonna do it today?
CARTER: Like in the day time?
CONRAD: Should I?
CARTER: Yeah, it’s less suspicious. You won’t think about it as much and you’ll get it over with instead of wait until the night.
CONRAD: Yeah then I will. Like where? Like I could go in any enclosed area.
CARTER: Go in your truck and drive in a parking lot somewhere, to a park or something. Do it like early. Do it now, like early.
CONRAD: Didn’t we say this was suspicious?
CARTER: No. I think night is more suspicious, a kid sitting in his car turning on the radio. Just do it. It wouldn’t be suspicious and it won’t take long.
CONRAD: Okay. I’m taking Holly for a walk.
CONRAD: I don’t know why I’m like this.
CARTER: Sometimes things happen and we never have the answers why.
CONRAD: Like, why am I so hesitant lately. Like two weeks ago I was willing to try everything and now I’m worse, really bad, and I’m LOL not following through. It’s eating me inside.
CARTER: You’re so hesitant because you keeping over thinking it and keep pushing it off. You just need to do it, Conrad. The more you push it off, the more it will eat at you. You’re ready and prepared. All you have to do is turn the generator on and you will be free and happy. No more pushing it off. No more waiting.
CONRAD: You’re right.
CARTER: If you want it as bad as you say you do it’s time to do it today.
CONRAD: Yup. No more waiting.
CARTER: Okay. I’m serious. Like you can’t even wait ‘till tonight. You have to do it when you get back from your walk.
CONRAD: Thank you.
CARTER: For what?
CONRAD: Still being here.
CARTER: I would never leave you. You’re the love of my life, my boyfriend. You are my heart. I’d never leave you.
CARTER: I love you.
CONRAD: Love you, too.
CARTER: When will you be back from your walk?
CONRAD: Like, five minutes.
CARTER: Okay. So you gonna do it?
CONRAD: I guess.
CARTER: Well, I want you to be ready and sure. What does that mean?
CONRAD: I don’t know. I’m freaking out again. I’m over thinking.
CARTER: I thought you wanted to do this. This time is right and you’re ready. You just need to do it. You can’t keep living this way. You just need to do it like you did the last time and not think about it and just do it, babe. You can’t keep doing this every day.
CONRAD: I do want to but I’m like freaking for my family I guess. I don’t know.
CARTER: Conrad, I told you I’ll take care of them. Everyone will take care of them to make sure they won’t be alone and people will help them get through it. We talked about this and they will be okay and accept it. People who commit suicide don’t think this much. They just could do it.
CONRAD: I know. I know. LOL. Thinking just drives me more crazy.
CARTER: You just need to do it, Conrad, or I’m gonna get you help. You can’t keep doing this everyday.
CONRAD: Okay. I’m gonna do it today.
CARTER: You promise?
CONRAD: I promise, babe. I have to now.
CARTER: Like right now?
CONRAD: Where do I go?
CARTER: And you can’t break a promise. And just go in a quiet parking lot or something.
CARTER: Go somewhere you know you won’t get caught. You can find a place. I now you can. Are you doing it now?
Later that afternoon, the conversation continued.
CONRAD: I’m determined.
CARTER: I’m happy to hear that.
CONRAD: I’m ready.
CARTER: Good because it’s time, babe. You know that. When you get back from the beach you’ve gotta go do it. You’re ready. You’re determined. It’s the best time to do it.
CONRAD: Okay, I will.
CARTER: Are you back?
CONRAD: No more thinking.
CARTER: Yes. No more thinking. You need to just do it. No more waiting.
CONRAD: On way back. I know where to go now.
CONRAD: A parking lot. There is going to be no cars there at 9:00. So that’s when I’ll be found.
CARTER: Okay, perfect. When will you be home?
CONRAD: Ten minutes. Ha ha, that’s perfect.
CARTER: Okay. And, well, yeah, I don’t know.
CONRAD: Like, I don’t want to kill anyone else with me.
CARTER: You won’t.
CONRAD: When they open the door they won’t know it’s odorless and colorless.
CARTER: You’re over thinking. They will see the generator and realize you breathed in CO too.
CONRAD: So should I keep it in the back seat or front?
CARTER: In the front. You could write on a piece of paper and tape it on saying carbon monoxide or something if you’re scared.
CONRAD: I was thinking that but someone might see it before it actually happens.
CARTER: Well, wait, the generator is gonna be on because you’ll be passed out, so they’ll know you used carbon monoxide. Dead. It’s not loud is it?
CONRAD: Not really, LMAO.
CARTER: Okay, good. Are you gonna do it now?
5:08 PM, Conrad returned from the beach and wanted to back out.
CONRAD: I’m home.
CONRAD: I don’t know. I’m stressing.
CARTER: You’re fine. It’s gonna be okay. You just gotta do it, babe. You can’t think about it.
CONRAD: Okay. Okay. I got this.
CARTER: Yes, you do. I believe in you. Did you delete the messages?
CONRAD: Yes. But you’re going to keep messaging me.
CARTER: I will until you turn on the generator.
CONRAD: Okay. Well, I’m bringing my sisters for ice cream.
CARTER: So will you do it when you get back?
CONRAD: Yup, I’ll go right there.
CONRAD: Love you.
CARTER: I love so much.
CONRAD: (Smiley face).
CONRAD: Ha ha. What are you doing?
CARTER: Nothing really. Just resting.
CONRAD: Okay. Ha, ha I’m procrastinating.
CARTER: Yeah, ha ha, I know. Are you back?
CARTER: So it’s time?
CONRAD: Oh, it’s been time.
CARTER: Are you gonna do it now?
CONRAD: I just don’t know how to leave them, you know.
CARTER: Say you’re gonna go the store or something.
CONRAD: Like, I want them to know that I love them.
CARTER: They know. That’s one thing they definitely know. You’re over thinking.
CONRAD: I know I’m over thinking. I’ve been over thinking for a while now.
CARTER: I know. You just have to do it like you said. Are you gonna do it now?
CONRAD: I still haven’t left yet, ha ha.
CONRAD: Leaving now.
CARTER: Okay. You can do this.
CONRAD: Okay. I’m almost there.
6:25 PM, the last message was sent.
After the exchange of these messages, Michelle left her house and talked with Conrad for 43 minutes. According to the court documents, at some point during that call, Conrad got out of the car because he got scared, but Michelle told him to get back in. His body was found in his pickup truck after his parents reported him missing.
On the day of Conrad’s murder, Michelle was already seeking attention on Twitter: “Such a beautiful soul gone too soon.” A little later she added: “I’ll always remember your bright light and smile. You’ll forever be in my heart, I love you Conrad.” She even organized a suicide prevention fundraiser in his name.
When the allegations of involuntary manslaughter were laid out, her Twitter account disappeared. You can still see some bits of it using the Internet Archive.
This is the first time such a case has ever been tried in the
world United States. Michelle is now 18 and is being prosecuted as an adult, charged with involuntary manslaughter.
Carter’s attorneys argue the texts were free speech protected by the First Amendment, didn’t cause the boyfriend to kill himself and that Conrad Roy was a depressed teenager settled to take his life. Prosecution believes Carter engaged in a methodical campaign that targeted Roy’s vulnerabilities
You can download the court document with the original transcript between Carter and Conrad from here [pdf].
Please sign and share the petition, so Conrad’s Law can become a reality! Thank you so much Colleen Johnson for creating it. Retweet and share #JusticeForConrad on Facebook and Twitter hashtag, so maybe one day Conrad’s Law will be put in the books. If someone is crying out for help, you should be obligated to help, as a human being and by the power of law.
Conrad was born in 1995. He would have turned 21 years old by now, be a precious son, brother, grandson, nephew, and a cousin whose life didn’t have to end at 18.