Conrad Roy's Family Speaks Out About Michelle Carter's Sentencing

"I was just sick to my stomach...two-and-a-half years isn't enough."

The family of Conrad Roy III is speaking out about the sentencing of Michelle Carter, who was charged with involuntary manslaughter after encouraging Roy to commit suicide via text message.

This week, Carter was sentenced to two and a half years in prison—and will not have to go to jail until all of her state appeals are exhausted. So, she was allowed her to go home with her family and there is a chance, if her appeals are successful, that she will not have to serve time.

"I was just sick to my stomach [at] the fact that she can just be free and my cousin, he's not here. Two-and-a-half years isn't enough," Roy's cousin Makenna O'Donnell said on Good Morning America. "It's not enough. She should be behind bars."

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Carter was convicted of sending her boyfriend hundreds of text messages encouraging him to act on suicidal thoughts, eventually reprimanding him to return to his car with a portable generator running.

"I just don't understand how somebody can be free, knowing that she deliberately told [Roy] to get back in the car," O'Donnell said. "She gets to sleep in her own bed tonight. She gets to wake up with her family, meanwhile, where's Conrad? Where's Conrad? He's watching us from up above, he's not gonna be here anymore."

When asked by CBS News if this case will ever be over for their family, Roy's mother, Lynn, said, "No. It never will be...We want to put it past us. We want to move on. Best way we can."

Carter's case is, according to CNN, the first to determine the legality of telling someone to commit suicide. Carter, who pleaded not guilty, faced up to 20 years in prison for the crime.

Lynn told CBS News she hopes her son's death leads to a new law.

If you or someone you know needs help, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK(8255) or visit their website.

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Kate Storey is a contributing editor at Marie Claire and writer-at-large at Esquire magazine, where she covers culture and politics. Kate's writing has appeared in ELLE, Harper's BAZAAR, Town & Country, and Cosmopolitan, and her first book comes out in summer 2023.