On Wednesday, 48-year-old Latarsha Sanders was sentenced to life imprisonment for the "ritualistic" killings of her two young sons. Her sentence does not carry the possibility of parole.
She was convicted of two counts of first-degree murder for killing her two sons in February 2018, 8-year-old Edson Brito and 5-year-old La'son Brito. She was also found guilty of one count of witness intimidation. According to CBS Boston, a life imprisonment sentence is mandatory for first-degree murder convictions. Latarsha Sanders' two sentences will run concurrently, along with a 9 to 10 year sentence for witness intimidation.
Prosecutors have argued that the murders of her young kids were "ritualistic" in nature and that their mother had claimed that the deaths of her children were due to "voodoo stuff."
According to police reports, the Brito brothers were found in the family apartment, stabbed to death with a kitchen knife and wrapped in bedding. Between the two of them, they had been stabbed at least a hundred times.
In a press release, prosecutors described the scene of the murder and said:
"Sanders cleaned up the children, placed them in beds, and mopped up the crime scene. Sanders never sought medical attention for the boys."
Defense claimed that Latarsha Sanders was "insane" and mentally incompetent at the time of the murders
On February 5, 2018, police responded to a 911 call from a Brockton home that belonged to Sanders and her family. According to prosecutors, responding officers found a distraught and combative Latarsha Sanders and the bodies of her two young sons. While she told the police that she murdered her children for "voodoo stuff," officials later contemplated whether the murders were motivated by money.
The defense argued that Latarsha Sanders was not completely stable at the time of the murders. They further said that several family members were against the Brockton-based mother's conviction and jail sentence.
However, according to prosecutors, the deceased's father was fully in support of the judgment. Furthermore, over time, family members of Sanders have come forward to talk about her and her "evil" behavior. According to NBC10 Boston, court reports state that her family described Sanders as an "evil and angry” person.
Latarsha Sander's mother told the police that her daughter was “mentally unstable and crazy,” and said:
"[She] began her obsession with the Illuminati theory two years ago from a YouTube video...[she] is obsessed with the ideation, rituals and numbers…as well as sacrifices."
Latarsha Sanders was also described as a paranoid woman who apparently kept tabs on her neighbors with a baby monitor. Her mother said that Sanders often acted deranged.
After her sentence was handed to her, Plymouth County District Attorney Timothy Cruz said in a statement:
"These two young boys were innocent babies with their lives ahead of them. This was an emotional and difficult case for all of the family members involved. There were no winners in the courtroom today."
Latarsha Sanders was found guilty after a nine-day trial and four hours of deliberation by the jurors.