Mom pleads not guilty in murder case

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week “I’ve also said I’ll always review the facts and compare them to the law before I announce my decision,” she said outside court Friday. Lashuan Harris’ lawyer, Teresa Caffese, refused to address questions about Harris’ mental state, saying only that her client was under suicide watch. She’s being held without bail. “It’s very, very difficult,” Caffese said. “This can’t be captured in words right now.” Authorities said Lashuan Harris, a former nurse’s assistant who was living in a homeless shelter, was seen putting her three boys in the bay Wednesday. The body of Harris’ middle son, Taronta Greeley, 2, was recovered late Wednesday about two miles from Pier 7. The other two – Treyshun Harris, 6, and Joshoa Greeley, 16 months – remained missing, but were presumed dead after so many hours in the water. The U.S. Coast Guard called off its search Thursday afternoon, but the San Francisco police and fire departments continue to scour the bay for the two bodies. Lashuan Harris’ next court hearing was scheduled for next Friday. She told investigators that she had stopped taking the antipsychotic drug Haldol once she got her schizophrenia symptoms under control over the summer, but the voices returned Tuesday night and were with her when she dropped her children into the water, according to police information obtained by The Associated Press. Family members said Lashuan Harris had made threats before. An aunt told the San Francisco Chronicle that the threats had prompted the woman’s mother to contact authorities, but others said they didn’t think Harris would actually kill her children. “She told my mama she was going to feed them to the sharks,” said Britney Fitzpatrick, Harris’ 16-year-old half sister. “No one thought it was that serious.” Demarcus Harris, Lashuan Harris’ cousin, said the last time he saw her was Tuesday at his sister’s house in Oakland, and the boys were with her. When his cousin left, she said goodbye and “I’m going to miss y’all.” He said neither he nor his sister suspected what she would do the next day. “We all thought she was just going home,” he said. Lashuan Harris was hospitalized in January at the John George Psychiatric Pavilion in San Leandro and her mother was briefly granted custody of the boys, according to her older sister, Telicia Harris, 26. Alameda County social service workers concluded after the first hospital stay that Lashuan Harris was fit to care for her sons, Telicia Harris said. Lashuan Harris’ aunt, Joyce Harris, told the Chronicle for Friday’s editions that Lashuan’s mother had contacted social services officials about three months ago to seek partial custody of the children. She made the request because Harris had stopped taking medication and had made threats regarding the boys, the paper reported. “They said she was sane, that they couldn’t do anything,” Joyce Harris told the newspaper. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! SAN FRANCISCO – The woman seen dropping her young sons into San Francisco Bay pleaded not guilty Friday to three counts of murder. Lashuan Harris, described as mentally ill by family members, kept her head down and held her public defender’s hand through most of the brief court hearing. She quietly answered “yes” when the San Francisco Superior Court judge asked whether she was willing to waive her right to a speedy preliminary hearing. Harris, 23, faces three counts of murder with special circumstances, making her eligible for the death penalty. San Francisco District Attorney Kamala Harris said she hasn’t yet ruled out seeking a death sentence. last_img read more