By Beth David, Editor
Michelle Carter, 20, the Plainville woman charged with involuntary manslaughter in the suicide death of Conrad Roy III in 2014, will be back in court on Monday, 3/20, for a hearing to decide which expert testimony will be allowed to testify at trial. The trial is scheduled to start on June 5.
The Daubert Standard, sometimes called a Daubert-Lanigan, is used by a judge to determine if the science behind a proposed expert’s testimony is based on a standard that is scientifically valid.
Mr. Roy was 18 when his body was found in the cab of his pickup truck on July 13, 2014, at the KMart Plaza in Fairhaven with a gasoline powered water pump in the vehicle with him. He died from carbon monoxide poisoning.
Detectives uncovered text messages and emails between Ms. Carter and Mr. Roy and between Ms. Carter and her friends leading a grand jury to indict her on the charge.
The case is being tried in juvenile court because Ms. Carter was 17 at the time, but she is being charged as an adult.
As part of his defense of Ms. Carter, defense attorney Joseph Cataldo wants to call experts to testify on the effects of certain anti-depressants on the teenage brain, as well as the development of the brain and impulse control of 18-year-olds. Both Mr. Roy and Ms. Carter were taking anti-depressants in 2014.
In court on 3/6, Mr. Cataldo tried to change the date of the Daubert hearing, saying that one of his experts could not make it. Judge Lawrence Moniz did not budge.
“Well, it works for the court,” said Judge Moniz. “[The expert] is going to have to change his schedule. I was very specific about this. I have canceled a session in another court to be available. You picked the date. It’s the 21st. That’s the end of that discussion.”
The court also set a date of May 10 for a Dwyer Hearing, which will decide if certain confidential medical records can be used at trial.
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