‘House of Horrors’ trial: Erika Murray acquitted on murder charge, found guilty of assault

Crime

WORCESTER, Mass. (WPRI) — A Blackstone woman accused of killing one of her babies and abusing two of her other children received a mixed verdict in her case Thursday morning.

Judge Janet Kenton-Walker issued the verdict after hearing the jury-waived trial – finding Erika Murray guilty of two counts of animal cruelty and two counts of assault and battery, causing injury to a child.

The judge acquitted Murray of a second-degree murder charge and reckless endangerment charges.

Murray, 35, faced several charges including murder after the skeletal remains of three infants were found inside a closet in her trash-strewn and vermin-infested home on St. Paul Street, where she had been living with her four surviving children.

The judge said she finds Murray suffered a combo of longstanding preexisting deficits and superimposed cognitive deficits that blinded her from decision making.

She said she’s convinced Murray suffers from combined dependent and avoidant personality disorder.

Kenton-Walker found Erika Murray guilty on both counts of animal cruelty. The jury-waived trial of Erika Murray wrapped up last week.

Blackstone Acting Police Chief, Gregory Gilmore, issued the following statement about the verdict:

On behalf of the dedicated men and women of the Blackstone Police Department who worked on this incredibly complex, disturbing and difficult case over the past five years, I would like to express my appreciation to the Worcester County District Attorney Joseph D. Early Jr.’s Office. This was a challenging case from the very beginning, but it has been most difficult for the children involved in this horrific situation. We also hope that with the end of this case, our community, which was shocked to our very core, can find closure.

As acting chief of police, I would like to also personally acknowledge the outstanding work of our Blackstone Police officers and detectives as well as the State Police Detectives Unit assigned to the Worcester County District Attorney’s Office and all the prosecutors who worked on the case.

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