Tampa, Florida – A Tampa woman convicted of murdering two teenage children is asking a judge to consider stopping a “life-changing” mental health drug.
Twelve years ago, Julie Schenecker admitted to shooting 16-year-old Calyx and 13-year-old Beau.
The video shows Shenecker shaking uncontrollably after being arrested. Clinical pharmacologists later said the tremors were due to tardive dyskinesia, an “involuntary neurological complication” resulting from abrupt discontinuation of psychotropic drugs.
Calix was shot in her bedroom while doing her homework, and Beau was shot in the family’s SUV while driving home with her mother.
Since her conviction, Schennecker has sought a new trial, saying the proper experts were not called to testify.
One of them was Dr. Danielle Buffington, who evaluated Shenecker in 2014 and determined that the psychotropic drugs she was taking when she killed her child may have caused harmful side effects.
At the October 2022 hearing, Schennecker said he made a mistake in the defense of not having Dr. Buffington on the stand during the trial.
Julie Schennecker after arrest
Meanwhile, Schennecker has been put back on medication since her conviction, but in July she told a judge she was being forced to quit “cold turkey.”
It’s unclear whether Schenecker is currently on the right dose of drugs, but in the new letter she told the judge, “Guidance on these types of drugs may ‘abruptly discontinue.’ and is not stated.”
In the letter, Schennecker said, “Society seems to have found a suitable cure for mental illness. Can we plead for your mercy and ask for your time served, and become part of society again?” said.
A judge has yet to decide whether Schenecker will face a new trial.