Woman kills kids 'cause God told her to

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Woman kills kids 'cause God told her to

Mother: God Ordered My Children's Deaths

Prosecutor Says Mom Is Guilty Of Murder For Throwing Kids Into San Francisco Bay; Defense Pleads Insanity

SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 21, 2006

LaShaun Harris San FranciscoLaShaun Harris is seen in court in San Francisco in this May 24, 2006, file photo. Harris, 24, is accused of drowning her three young sons in San Francisco Bay in October 2005. (AP/SF Chronicle/Frederic Larson) 
(AP) A woman who claimed God ordered her to make a human sacrifice chose to throw her three children into San Francisco Bay instead of herself, making her guilty of murder, a prosecutor said during closing arguments at the woman's trial.

Prosecutor Linda Allen asked jurors to use their heads, not their hearts, to determine LaShuan Harris' fate.

"I don't expect you to have a cold heart, but to have a rational mind," Allen said.

The mentally ill Oakland woman has pleaded not guilty to three counts of murder by reason of insanity.

Defense attorney Teresa Caffese said Harris believed completely that she was sending her children — 6-year-old Trayshun Harris, 2-year-old Taronta Greeley, Jr., and 16-month-old Joshoa Greeley — to heaven when she threw them over a railing and into the bay's cold waters. If Harris believed her delusions were real, Caffese argued, she is innocent of murder.

She said her client was, by many accounts, a good mother and gentle person whose lifelong struggle with mental illness finally overwhelmed her.

If the jury finds Harris guilty, it must then determine whether she was legally sane at the time of the crime. She faces a possible life prison sentence if convicted on all charges.

Caffese read from a letter she said Harris wrote from jail that was addressed to God.

"I did what you told me and now I am in lockup," Harris wrote. "Kiss my boys for me."

Allen said Harris deserves sympathy, but told jurors they could not use that as a factor in determining guilt or innocence.

While Harris believes she heard God's voice, it took a series of rational decisions to take her children from Oakland to the pier, undress the boys — one of whom struggled with her — hoist them over the railing and drop them into the water, Allen said.

"She knew you had to die to get to heaven. She knew how to get them to God. They had to die first, and that was her plan," she said.

The jury could begin deliberating Thursday.

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Damn that post looks

Damn that post looks sexy!  The new text editor did all that on it's own when you cut and pasted, eh?



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Yes, that text editor is a

Yes, that text editor is a great tool.

 What gets me about all of this is that the Bible does actually condone this type of action.  I mean, Abraham is told to sacrifice his son, right? Granted, he didn't do it, but only because an angel came to stop him at the last second.  I guess that angel was either not ordered to stop this woman or he was running late.  

 On a related note, has anyone else here read the book Fear and Trembling by Soren Kierkegaard?Fear and Trembling

For anyone who has yet to read it, it's a book that contains four short stories about four different interpretation sof this story about Abraham.  It's all about faith--the subject for which Kierkegaard is best known.

 It's a fascinating exploration of the psychology of faith.  I wonder if this mother had a marked up copy of it in her library.

 I somehow doubt it.





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Well, that story just

Well, that story just ruined my whole day.  Why isn't there a stronger effort at the health care level to identify these people who are delusional depressives and force them to take their meds?


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UPDATE:  Mother who


Mother who threw children off pier acquitted of murder

POSTED: 9:01 p.m. EST, January 9, 2007

SAN FRANCISCO, California (AP) -- A woman who pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity after throwing her three children into San Francisco Bay was acquitted Tuesday of first-degree murder but convicted of assault.

The jury continued deliberating the possibility of convicting LaShuan Harris, 24, of second-degree murder or manslaughter. Jurors must also decide whether Harris was legally sane when she killed her children.

The assault charges carry a maximum penalty of life in prison.

Harris has been accused of killing 6-year-old Trayshawn Harris, 2-year-old Taronta Greely Jr. and 16-month-old Joshua Greely. She threw the boys into the chilly bay October 19, 2005. Prosecutors have said they won't seek the death penalty.

In her videotaped confession, Harris described how she struggled with two of her boys as she stripped them and plunged them from Pier 7, where tourists stroll along the waterfront. Her youngest boy laughed, thinking it was a game.

One of the bodies was recovered, but the others were never found.

Her lawyer said Harris had schizophrenia, was borderline mentally retarded and was convinced she was sending her children to heaven.

But prosecutors said Harris claimed God told her to make a human sacrifice. And because she chose to kill her children instead of herself, she should be found guilty of murder, they said.

Prosecutor Linda Allen said jurors would probably feel sorry for Harris but urged them to use their heads, not their hearts.

"I don't expect you to have a cold heart, but to have a rational mind," Allen said.

According to her lawyer, Harris was placed in a psychiatric hospital six times between February 2004 and August 2005, and her mother warned a social worker that she would hurt her children. But the social worker didn't believe her, Caffese said.


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Her lawyer said Harris had schizophrenia, was borderline mentally retarded and was convinced she was sending her children to heaven.

So this is what it takes to be as god centered as so many theists pray to be???

I tell I tell theists about my brother who always seems to be a million miles away. He says that his every thought is a prayer. Everything he does he does in prayer. They get all wistfull, and admit that they wish they could be like that.

Then I tell them. My brother is mentally disabled. Not mildly, like this woman, I mean Special Olympics disabled.


We must favor verifiable evidence over private feeling. Otherwise we leave ourselves vulnerable to those who would obscure the truth.
~ Richard Dawkins