“Society,” he said, “is ahead of the law here.”
More than two dozen countries have laws reducing punishment and providing psychiatric care for mothers who kill children under the age of 1. In 2018, Illinois was the first US state to pass a law making postpartum illness a mitigating factor in sentencing.
Ms Clancy posted frequently on social media, leaving behind snapshots of the family and updates on her mental health. In a post last fall, she described an adverse reaction to Zoloft, a commonly prescribed antidepressant, that left her with “extreme insomnia” and loss of appetite that she had to stop taking it.
In the four months before the murders, Mr Reddington said, he was prescribed 13 psychiatric drugs, an assortment of benzodiazepines, antidepressants, mood stabilizers and Ambien, which is used as a sleep aid.
“This continued until weeks ago when her husband went to the doctor and asked him for help and said, ‘Please, you’re turning her into a zombie,'” she told a hearing last week. In Tuesday’s allegation, she said she suffered from postpartum depression, “as well as the possibility of postpartum psychosis which has been largely ignored.”
Meanwhile, prosecutors carried out the murders according to a carefully planned plan.
Using data from Ms Clancy’s phone, Ms Sprague detailed how Ms Clancy spent the afternoon of 24 January – building a snowman with her children and taking pictures that she sent to her mother and husband. Then, at 4:13 p.m., she searched for a restaurant to order takeout from, using Apple Maps to calculate how long it would take to drive to the restaurant and back.
At 4:53, she texted Mr. Clancy, who was working from a home office in the basement, and asked him to pick up food — a Mediterranean power bowl for her, scallop and pork belly risotto for her. He had a 14-second call at 5:34 pm, which Mr Clancy described as unremarkable, although “he looked like he was in the middle of something.”
Ms Sprague said when Mr Clancy returned home after 6pm, he was confused to find the house quiet. Putting down the containers and climbing to the second floor, he opened the master bedroom door to see blood on the floor and an open window.