Conrad Roy III died by suicide in 2014 after his girlfriend, Michelle Carter, sent him text messages encouraging him to kill himself.
Michelle Carter was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in 2017 and sentenced to 15 months in jail, which she began serving in February. She earned early release, and she is expected to be released March 13, 2020, according to Fox News.
Conrad Roy’s family members spoke on the Dr. Oz show in an episode that airs November 7, 2019.
Roy had a troubled home life and struggled with depression. He attempted suicide four times before his death at age 18 July 13, 2014.
He graduated from Old Rochester Regional High School in Mattapoisett in June. He had been accepted to Fitchburg State University, according to South Coast Today.
The day before his death, his family thought “everything seemed alright” with him. He spent the day with his mother and took his sisters for ice cream.
Critics of the conviction say the reasons behind Roy Conrad’s suicide were oversimplified. Lynn Roy, Conrad Roy III’s mother, noticed her son started having problems around the time of the divorce between his parents. The divorce was both messy and violent. Roy Conrad III wrote in a police report his father beat him for not immediately putting away dinner, according to Boston.com.
His parents also said the relationship between Michelle Carter and Roy Conrad was largely based on text messages. They lived an hour apart, and only met about five times.
Roy Conrad spoke about his depression in a video, where he said he kept trying to better himself in his education and trying to relate to people through sports, TV shows, movies and hobbies.
“What I am doing is looking at myself so negatively, looking at myself – a minuscule little particle on the face of this earth, this no good trash that will never be successful, never have a wife, never have kids, never learn,” he said on the video. “But I have a lot to offer someone.”
Here’s what you need to know.
1. ‘I Have A Lot To Offer Someone, Carter Said On A Video Before Suicide
Conrad Roy III recorded a video of himself one month before he died in an attempt to explain the confusion in his mind. He was 18 years old.
“This is Conrad Henri Roy III, reporting to you about what’s going on in my mind, what’s going on through my head the last few days,” he said on the video he recorded June 13, 2014.
It appeared that he recorded the video in a room in his home.
He explained that he became discouraged when he tried to better himself in his schoolwork and social life and felt that he was falling short.
“So it all started off just trying to do too much to better myself in so little time. Like studying, vocabulary words, trying to relate – TV shows, movies, sports videos, cars, like, I don’t know Twitter phenomenon,” he said.
He said he tried to follow current events so he could talk to people about things that were going on in the world and in the media.
During his video he appeared to cringe, lean forward toward the camera and bared his teeth, continuing in monotone.
“And what I am doing is looking at myself so negatively, looking at myself – a minuscule little particle on the face of this earth, this no good trash that will never be successful, never have a wife, never have kids, never learn,” he said on the video.
He leaned back and his tone became more intense and articulated.
“But I have a lot to offer someone,” he said.
He said he is introverted and had “benefits.”
“I’m a nice kid,” he said. “But it just comes to a point where I’m just too nice.”
2. Conrad Attempted Suicide Four Times Before His Death
Conrad Roy attempted suicide four times before his girlfriend, Michelle Carter, coaxed him into suicide. One of those attempts was an overdose on pills that nearly killed him. He frequently searched for suicide methods online, according to Boston.com.
A police report obtained by South Coast Today detailed a suicide attempt, saying a girl saved his son’s life after one suicide attempt.
“Mr. Roy then explained that the first time Conrad had attempted suicide he was talking to a girl that he had met in a group and she called the police right away, and she saved his life because the police were right on it, and if it had gone unnoticed he could have died,” it said.
The newspaper quoted the police report written by Fairhaven Police Department Detective Scott R. Gordon after an interview with Conrad’s father, Conrad Ray Jr. in August.
His suicide was something he and Michelle Carter planned, as text messages between the couple described. She detailed the way he would die in a text saying it would be painless. She went onto describe the location he should go and the time of day.
“Yeah, it will work,” Carter said in a text, according to Boston.com. “If you emit 3200 ppm of it for five or ten minutes you will die within a half hour. You lose consciousness with no pain. You just fall asleep and die. You can also just take a hose and run that from the exhaust pipe to the rear window in your car and seal it with duct tape and shirts, so it can’t escape. You will die within, like, 20 or 30 minutes all pain free.”
3. Conrad Roy Appeared Successful But Struggled With Mental Health
Eric Dawicki, president of Northeast Maritime Institute in Fairhaven told South Coast Today Conrad had received his captain’s license the previous spring, taking three months of night classes to complete the course. Conrad planned to participate in his family’s business, Tucker Roy Marine Towing and Salvage. He described the teen as skillful and talented. He described a day when Conrad pulled their tug boat and barge into the harbor when his father took a longer nap than he’d planned.
“He had this great smile when he would talk about (being on the water),” Dawicki told the newspaper.
Conrad graduated from Old Rochester Regional High School in June, and he had been accepted to Fitchburg State University.
In the hours leading up to his death, Conrad’s family would later tell police “everything seemed alright.” He spent the day with his mother and sisters, and he took his sisters out for ice cream. Meanwhile, he was also exchanging a series of text messages with Michelle Carter who was encouraging him to proceed with their suicide plan.
Conrad was struggling increasingly with his mental health throughout high school, according to a police report filed by Fairhaven Police Department Detective Scott R. Gordon obtained by the newspaper.
“Mr. Roy … explained that Conrad did try to commit suicide before in the past,” Gordon wrote. “Mr. Roy then explained that Conrad had a lot of anxiety, so much that they had difficulty getting him to go to school and into the classroom with other kids.
4. Conrad Roy Rarely Saw Girlfriend Michelle Carter; Alleged He Was Abused At Home
Roy Conrad met Michelle Carter about two or three years before his death when both families were on vacations in Florida to visit relatives. The teens lived about an hour apart.
“They met maybe five times,” Lynn Roy says in the documentary, according to Boston.com. “I never saw her. I mean I saw him text her all the time on his phone, but I didn’t think they had a relationship like that.”
Lynn Roy told Esquire the teens’ relationship was based on text messages.
The news outlet said Michelle and Conrad would make plans to meet but never follow through. When Michelle would ask Conrad if she was his girlfriend, he would dodge the question.
Meanwhile, Conrad was facing a tumultuous home life. He once wrote a police report saying his father beat him because he wouldn’t immediately put away dinner and his father’s girlfriend ridiculed him.
“Told Dad I would put pan of mac & cheese away after commercial of basketball game,” Roy wrote in a statement to police, according to Boston.com. “He said do it now. He punched me repeatedly and pinned me down. I couldn’t get up. His girlfriend said I was piece of s***.”
His father commented on the alleged abuse in the documentary, saying, the account was “embarrassing.”
“Things got out of control and we both fought each other. And I’d do it again just like that,” he said, according to Boston.com.
Lynn Roy, Conrad’s mother, told South Coast Today her son was “an amazing person with a huge heart.”
5. Scholarship Fund Set Up In Conrad’s Honor
Conrad Roy III received his captain’s license after completing three months of night classes. Eric Dawicki, president of Northeast Maritime Institute in Fairhaven spoke with South Coast Today about the teen and the scholarship fund set up in his honor.
“He was so proud of being able to pull off this curriculum,” Dawicki told the newspaper. “He did extremely well.”
He said he had no idea the teen was struggling with depression when the teen was taking classes the previous spring.
He told the newspaper he “had no sense whatsoever that there was any depression or anxiety.”
“To know that he was having struggles is hard to fathom,” Dawicki said.
The Northeast Marine Foundation Institute website describes Conrad as talented with an infectious smile and vast knowledge.
“Conrad H. Roy III was an exemplary student as a young mariner – a Northeast mariner!” the website said. “He had the single greatest quality that one could ask for in a mariner – a twinkle in his eye. His smile was infectious, his knowledge was fostered by a great experience in the classroom and his work ethic were the driving forces behind his goal of becoming an extremely effective Master Mariner in the future.”
“Conrad represented the quintessential New Bedford and Fairhaven work ethic of a history of over two hundred years producing some of the finest seafarers in the world. Please honor Conrad and his family by donating to the Conrad H. Roy Scholarship Fund.”