Mom Gets Two Life Terms, One for Her Daughter & One for Her Son

Kelli Lynn MurphyA mom got two life sentences for killing her kids this week in what is simultaneously the best and worst news of the week. The worst, of course, because Kelli Murphy murdered her two children in cold blood. Two children are gone in an act that's completely senseless. But as the family of little Liam and Madigan Murphy said in a statement to the media, the jurors did their job here.

Kelli Murphy could have been convicted of reckless manslaughter. She could have gotten off with just parole. Instead, we were reminded this week by a Colorado court that children matter, that their lives have as much value as an adult's.


Murphy was instead found guilty of two counts of first-degree murder and two counts of first-degree murder by a person in a position of trust. The mother who strangled her 9- and 6-year-old children so her soon-to-be ex-husband wouldn't get custody will spend the rest of her life in prison, the result of two consecutive life sentences handed down by the courts this week.

This can't erase the tragedy of two children being murdered by their own mother. But there's something to be said for justice here.

Two children are dead. For a mother to have the hubris to expect probation when she did the deed is unthinkable. I hate to bring out the "real mother" card here, but I'm going to. A real mother would be so angry at herself for such a crime that she'd want more punishment, not less.

That alone speaks to success in that courtroom.

And there's more. There's the fact that the sentence is indicative of the way a person will be treated for doing something so heinous to children. We don't brush it under the rug because, hey now, motherhood is tough and blah, blah, blah.

Kelli Murphy may have wanted the jury to care about her and how prison would affect her life, but the rights of her poor kids won out here. Two life sentences for this woman is just about right, don't you think?

What do you think of the sentence for Kelli Murphy?


Image via Douglas County Sheriff

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