In a General Sessions courtroom in Sumner County this week, Lindsey Lowe, age 25, confessed to killing her two newborn sons just moments after they were born last Monday night. Lowe told investigators she delivered the twins in the bathroom of her parent’s house and in an attempt to hide the pregnancy she covered each of the babies’ mouths until they suffocated. She then wrapped the bodies in blankets and hid them in a clothes basket where they were later discovered by Lowe’s father, who called the police. Lowe, who is now out on a $250,000 bond, left jail Tuesday evening with her family and lawyer. Moreover, Lowe has agreed to submit to a mental evaluation and treatment if necessary.
Although not representing Lowe, prominent Nashville attorney David Raybin, of Raybin & Weissman, P.C., provided his own unique perspective regarding the mental evaluation process and its legal applicability. Raybin explained that despite the absence of an institutional record ripe with mental problems, it is still possible for such problems to have existed in an individual for a long time. He continued, saying that pregnancy in young women is associated with considerable hormonal fluctuations, which in turn is likely to influence their thinking and behavior. These aspects coupled with the fact that Lowe was placed on suicide watch while in jail supports the contention that this case could be very psychological in nature. Moreover, the mental evaluation is a key element in the ability of Lowe to enter a plea of insanity for the murders.
A plea of insanity establishes that a person is unaware of the criminality and wrongness of their actions when committing an offense. Raybin points out, an acquittal by reason of insanity is legally permitted if it can be established that the defendant, due to mental disease, lacked the capacity to differentiate between right and wrong behavior at the time of the offense. It is up to Lowe’s lawyer to prove that this lack of judgment existed due to a mental deficiency. If successful in establishing an insanity defense, Lowe would be immediately committed to a mental hospital rather than prison. Likewise, Lowe would not be released from the mental institution until the psychiatrist and the court agree that it is proper to do so. A preliminary hearing had been set for September 28, however, on Monday the judge announced his intention to reschedule the hearing in the days to come. Lowe is currently facing two counts of first-degree murder, in addition to the potential for the death penalty upon recommendation by the prosecution.
***Final Important Note***
The state of Tennessee has what is known as a “Safe Haven” law. Under this statute, a mother who within 72 hours of having a child, can bring her newborn baby to any hospital, fire or police station and drop the child off, no questions asked.
Posted By: Eston Whiteside