Veronica Cirella, a 31-year-old Long Island mom has been accused of killing her disabled daughter, Julie in 2011. Prosecutors state that the mom poisoned her daughter, who suffered from a peanut allergy, with M&M's that had traces of peanuts. Cirella was charged with second-degree murder this week and pleaded not guilty in the death of eight-year-old daughter.
As an infant Julie was diagnosed with cerebral palsy and was confined to a wheelchair, the New York Daily News reports. On July 23, 2011, Julie was expected to be a flower girl in her cousin's wedding. She was found dead hours before. Although the M&M's with traces of peanuts are at the center of the case, CBS News reports that an autopsy has failed to determine a cause of death.
There was a certain protocol that should have been followed as far as giving care for the allergy that she did not take, a prosecutor had said when Cirella was arrested last summer.
Cirella had attempted suicide after Julie died, and in a suicide note revealed what happened to her daughter. The mom said that she had fed her daughter M&M's as a special treat for her participation in the wedding. The note continued that when she realized that the candy might contain peanuts she gave Julie liquid Benadryl. Cirella said that they had went to sleep and when she woke up in the morning she found Julie dead.
I had to give her a better life, which was to give her back to heaven, read Cirella's note, whose details were obtained by The New York Daily News. She does not deserve to be in pain whatsoever. I don't mind going to hell because I took my life to give her a better life which is in heaven where she can be free.
Cirella's attorney, William Keahon told reporters that her suicide note wasn't an admittance of murder, but instead a distraught woman thought she accidentally killer her daughter.
Each child's death arouses strong emotions, said District Attorney Kathleen Rice. But prosecutors must evaluate the evidence objectively, and regardless of how difficult the defendant perceived her circumstances to be, taking her daughter's life was unjustified.
Cirella will remain in custody until her trial due to the attempted suicide.