"A Southern California woman [Carol Ann Coronado] who slit the throats of her three children ... was convicted of first-degree murder ... The sanity phase of the trial was scheduled to begin on Tuesday. Coronado could be sent to a state mental hospital if it is determined that she was insane at the time of the killings." - AP, as reprinted in the New York Post, December 1, 2015. Here is the article.
This is one of the cases, as with Andrea Yates, that laypeople like myself, wish they were lawyers. We want to help in the defense. Either we ourselves have come undone or someone close to us have. Yet, society has little or no compassion for when the supposed "miscreant" comes out of that emotional blackout. Also, there is no forgiveness.
Coronado had three children, all just a bit under two years old. Her husband wanted a divorce. She was 32. The youngest was two months. Therefore, Coronado could have been suffering from post-partum depression. In its extreme form, it could precipitate psychosis.
Mental illness isn't a rare exotic disease. It afflicts about 22% of adults in America annually. If it were a physical ailment, family, friends, and neighbors would intervene. They do that all the time in the 100-unit complex where I live.
But mental disease? Most simply ignore that. Even when the symptoms worsen. Yet, those bystanders never are put on trial. Maybe they should be. My hunch is that someone or many someones observed that Coronado was having difficulty managing three very young children and a life which would include divorce.
To this day, I haven't forgiven those who allowed my two sisters and myself to remain with a psychotic mother. I might have better odds for a stable, trauma-free girlhood in foster homes.