Sixty-three-year-old Martha White of Killearn Lakes Plantation, Florida, reportedly was drinking and taking Xanax when she was watching her two grandsons -- 7-year-old Mason Rhineheart and his 8-year-old brother who has remained unnamed. Something snapped inside her. She was not in her right mind when she asked Mason to come with her to the bathroom because she had a "surprise" for him.
Parents worry about who they leave their kids with all the time. There is a certain ease we have when it's the grandparent who is taking care of them for us. In this case, it seems, one grandmother had a moment of insanity and she killed her grandson because she was "fed up."
This is so terribly sad. This grandmother wasn't in her right mind if she was taking Xanax and drinking. But how much in her right mind was she before that? She did make the decision to take Xanax and drink while watching her grandchildren. We cannot be under the influence when taking care of kids.
The two brothers were said to have been playing video games when their grandmother told Mason to come with her for a "surprise" in the bathroom. She took him in, locked the door, and stabbed him multiple times in the chest. Mason's brother heard him screaming, "I don't want to die, please don't kill me." This is so heartbreaking, so hard to read. He tried to break into the room but couldn't so he called his father and found a place to hide. This is an 8-year-old we're talking about. An 8-year-old who has just heard his 7-year-old brother being murdered by their grandmother. This is just the most awful story. There are too many senseless murders of children. It must stop.
The grandma left Mason dying on the bathroom floor and seemed to look for his brother. She couldn't find him, but as she left the home, the hiding child said he heard her saying that she had a "surprise" for him, too. The police found her in her car with alcohol and Xanax, covered in blood. She was brought to Leon County Jail.
Thankfully Mason's brother was unharmed in the physical sense, but his loss and the pain that he is going through must be so hard to handle. This family has been destroyed. I can't help but wonder if there were signs. We all get "fed up" with kids from time to time, but we don't murder them. Did the grandmother show signs of despair? Did she have a problem with alcohol and drug abuse prior to this incident? Was she resentful when she watched her grandkids? These are not excuses, of course. But when there is a crime like this where a family is torn apart and an innocent child has been murdered, the questions always seem to outnumber the answers.
My sincerest condolences to this family, especially to Mason's brother who, I hope, gets the help and love he needs at this time and always.
What do you think should happen to this grandmother?
Image via Leon County Jail