A woman accused of manslaughter in the death of her friend and fellow college student from Boston College claims that she tried to prevent the tragedy, despite engulfing him with text messages demanding that he commit suicide.
Inyoung You, 21, told the investigators that she rushed to the Boston parking garage, where Alexander Urtula, 22, died on May 20 and tried to stop him, two law enforcement officials said Boston Globe.
You, a native of South Korea who grew up in the state of Washington, were charged this week for involuntary manslaughter for urtula's death. Prosecutors said you sent Urtula thousands of text messages urging him to kill himself.
You had used her phone to follow Urtula to the garage and you were present when he committed suicide, prosecutors have said.
Inyoung You, 21, was & # 39; physically, verbally and psychologically insulting & # 39; for fellow Boston College student Alexander Urtula during an 18-month relationship, Suffolk officer Rachael Rollins said at a news conference. Both are pictured above
On the day of his death, Urtula's parents, immigrants from the Philippines, were on campus for his graduation, and he contacted them that morning to inform them that he was planning to injure himself, the law enforcement officials said.
You left Boston College after Urtula's death and fled to South Korea.
Authorities said Monday that they were cautiously optimistic & # 39; are, she will return to face charges, but Suffolk prosecutor Rachael Rollins said her office is willing to pursue extradition.
It is unclear whether an extradition request has been submitted and the Justice Department said it does not comment on individual requests, including whether they exist.
Legal experts say that the novelty of the legal theory behind the prosecution can present challenges if you try to combat extradition.
America's extradition treaty with South Korea contains a clause stipulating that the charge must apply to a crime recognized in both countries.
& # 39; South Korea could claim that South Korean law did not recognize the method of participation in crime, in fact this is a fairly unorthodox method of participation & # 39 ;, John Cerone, guest professor of international law to the Fletcher School at Tufts University, told the Boston Herald.
The state of Massachusetts has successfully prosecuted Michelle Carter for involuntary manslaughter for using text messages and phone calls to encourage her friend, Conrad Roy, to kill herself in 2014.
However, there are few or no other precedents in the US and it is unclear whether such a case has been prosecuted in South Korea.
Prosecutors in Boston say you had & # 39; full and total control & # 39; about her boyfriend before he took his own life.
Inyoung You, 21, was & # 39; physically, verbally and psychologically insulting & # 39; Urtula during an 18-month relationship, Rollins said at a press conference on Monday.
Rollins said she sent the 22-year-old – originally from Cedar Grove, New Jersey – more than 47,000 text messages in the last two months of their relationship, including many who urged him to commit suicide. commit & # 39; or & # 39; to die & # 39; .
& # 39; You also followed Urtula and were in the neighborhood when he died in Boston on May 20, the day he graduated from Boston College, & # 39; she said in court.
Attorney Rachael Rollins acknowledged agreements between the case of U and the case of Carter, but said there were also significant differences, such as the complete control you had over Urtula
The case was compared to that of Michelle Carter, the Massachusetts woman, who was sentenced to 15 months in prison after being convicted in 2017 of involuntary manslaughter for using text messages and phone calls to encourage her friend, Conrad Roy to kill themselves in 2014
Rollins acknowledged similarities between the case of You and Carter, but said there were also significant differences, such as the complete control that You had over Urtula.
& # 39; Many of the messages show the power dynamics of the relationship, in which Ms. U set demands and threats with the understanding that she had complete and total control over Mr. Urtula both mentally and emotionally, & # 39; Rollins said.
You isolated Urtula from friends and family and were aware of the depression and suicidal thoughts that were caused by her abuse, the prosecutor said.
Prosecutors are negotiating with U's counsel to have her return voluntarily to the US, but if she does not, Rollins will initiate extradition proceedings.
Representatives who could speak for you could not be found immediately. A Rollins spokesperson said he could not disclose the name of you 's counsel.
Urtula was a biology major who had completed his course work and worked as a researcher at a hospital in New York at the time of his death, Boston College spokesman Jack Dunn said in a mailed statement. He was also active in the Philippine Society of Boston College, an organization of Filipino American students.
You studied economics at Boston College and were scheduled to graduate in May, but withdrew in August, Dunn said.
Carter's lawyers maintained her texts were constitutional protected freedom of expression. Her conviction was confirmed by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, but has appealed to the US Supreme Court, which has not yet decided whether it will take the case.
Call the National Suicide Prevention Line for confidential support: 1-800-273-8255
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