An Oregon woman has been sentenced to life in prison for throwing her autistic 6-year-old son over 100 feet to his death from a bridge in the coastal town of Newport in 2014, prosecutors said on Tuesday.
Jillian McCabe, 36, pleaded guilty in Lincoln County Circuit Court on Monday to murdering her son London, District Attorney Michelle Branam said in a statement.
McCabe “was very calculated” in planning the homicide weeks in advance, Branam said, leaving behind a trail online and in phone records that showed she had researched legal defenses based upon findings of insanity and also appeared to fake mental illness and manipulate doctors.
“Based on the searches on her phone, you could surmise Jillian planned to murder London by throwing him off the bridge and to get committed to the State hospital,” Branam said.
She added that, at one point, McCabe searched online: “Can you die falling 133 ft in water?”
Authorities say McCabe called police on Nov. 3, 2014, to report that she had thrown her son from the Yaquina Bay Bridge in Newport, a town of some 10,000 about 115 miles southwest of Portland.
Branam said an autopsy found the fall did not kill London. He suffered broken bones after the impact and ultimately drowned.
The U.S. Coast Guard sent two boats and a helicopter to help search for London before his body was spotted in the water near the Embarcadero Resort, about a mile from the bridge, by a diner about four hours after she reported the incident, police said.
A website previously set up by McCabe to seek financial aid, helpmatt.org, described her family as facing financial challenges after a brain injury landed her husband, Matt, in hospital for four months last year and left him unemployed upon his release.
“With London’s autism, the financial and emotional load of Matt not being there for month after month is more than most of us can understand,” she wrote on the website.
McCabe’s admission of guilt followed a plea deal under which prosecutors agreed to drop additional charges of aggravated murder and manslaughter, the Oregonian newspaper reported.
McCabe, who received a life sentence in prison, can seek parole after serving 25 years, Branam’s office said.
She was previously scheduled to face trial in August.
An attorney for McCabe could not immediately be reached.
(Reporting by Eric M. Johnson in Seattle; Editing by James Dalgleish and Andrew Hay)
Larry Kramer, author, activist, ACT UP founder dead at 84
Larry Kramer, the playwright, AIDS activist, author, public health advocate, and LGBTQ activist who founded GMHC (Gay Men’s Health Crisis) and later ACT UP (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power), is dead at 84.
The New York Times reports Kramer's husband, David Webster, said he died of pneumonia.
Kramer was known as an outspoken activist who wielded hyperbole like a sword.
“One of America’s most valuable troublemakers,” Susan Sontag called him.
CNBC anchors argue on air: ‘100,000 people died… all you did was try to help your friend the president’
CNBC anchor Andrew Ross Sorkin on Wednesday accused co-anchor Joe Kernen of providing political help to President Donald Trump instead of reporting factual news about the coronavirus pandemic.
Kernen appeared to get under Sorkin's skin by dismissing questions about the relatively quick market comeback as the rest of the economy suffers in the midst of the pandemic.
"Joe, you missed [the stock market] 100% on the way down and you missed 100,000 deaths," Sorkin said. "So we can have this debate back and forth and you can try and question the questions I'm asking."
"Hold on!" Sorkin shouted when Kernen tried to interrupt him.
A closer look at Trump COVID contractors reveals inexperience, fraud accusations and a weapons dealer operating out of someone’s house
A firm set up by a former telemarketer who once settled federal fraud charges for $2.7 million. A vodka distributor accused in a pending lawsuit of overstating its projected sales. An aspiring weapons dealer operating out of a single-family home.
These three privately held companies are part of the new medical supply chain, offered a total of almost $74 million by the federal government to find and rapidly deliver vital protective equipment and COVID-19 testing supplies across the U.S. While there’s no evidence that they obtained their deals through political connections, none of the three had to bid against competing firms. One has already lost its contract for lack of performance; it’s unclear if the other two can fulfill their orders on time, or at all.