A Massachusetts woman received two life sentences for the ritualistic stabbings of her two children that she said was part of her voodoo practice. She is ineligible for parole and will serve nine to 10 years concurrently for witness intimidation.
The trial took nine days but deliberation spanned only four hours.
The jury found 48-year-old Latarsha Sanders guilty in the Feb. 2018 stabbing deaths of her 8-year-old son, Edson Brito, and her 5-year-old son, La’Son Brito. Police said after the horrific slayings she mopped her floor and covered the victims with sheets in their beds.
Later she asked her neighbor, who was a first responder, to call an ambulance for herself. It was the neighbor who found the bodies in the third-floor apartment.
Sanders initially told investigators conflicting stories but ultimately confessed to the ritual killings. She admitted to stabbing each 50 times, though autopsies showed one was stabbed 80 times and the other 20.
Sanders confessed to first stabbing Edson with a kitchen knife as part of a voodoo ritual and then attacking her 5-year-old.
Brockton mother Latarsha Sanders sentenced to life in prison for murdering 2 sons https://t.co/oFXRl2uD2T
— WBZ | CBS Boston News (@wbz) December 28, 2022
Her family said she would frequently speak of rituals and conspiracy theories. Her conversations often included references to the Illuminati, numerology, and sacrifices. Her obsession with the Illuminati reportedly began two years before the killings after she saw a YouTube video.
Court records showed family members described Sanders as an “evil and angry” woman, and her mother said she was “mentally unstable and crazy.”
Judge William Sullivan issued the pair of life sentences Wednesday morning along with the concurrent time to be served.
Sullivan told the courtroom gathering that “the pain of the father, the sisters, the aunts, uncles, grandmother of La’Son and Marlon, that pain falls on their hearts every day.”
He added that the pain amounts to a life sentence for each of the loved ones of the little boys.
Plymouth County District Attorney Tim Cruz said after the sentencing that “hopefully this is some form of justice for the dad of the little boys and the family.” He noted that his office was “here to try to make sure we keep people safe (and) that the right person is held accountable.”