Friday, August 27, 2010

A Mom Who Kills

Hundreds of mourners gathered for the funeral for two South Carolina toddlers who authorities say were killed by their mother. Investigators say 29-year-old Shaquan Duley suffocated her sons after a fight with her mother, then tried to make the deaths look an accident.  Apparently, Shaquan was unemployed and lived with her mother.  Her inability to provide for her children served as a constant source of friction for Shaquan and her mother.  The 29-year-old mother later told police that she was "distraught" after the dispute with her mother, so she killed 18-month-old Ja'Van Duley and 2-year-old Devean by putting her hand over their mouths.  Then she strapped them into their car seats and drove the car into a river.

What the heck?  How could a mother do the unimaginable...murder her own children.  Aren't we supposed to be wired to protect and nurture????  But....although it seems unnatural for a woman to kill her own children it is not uncommon. More than 200 women kill their children in the US every year, according to a study by the American Anthropological Association.  Depression coupled with mounting stress is typically the cause, experts say.

Interestingly enough, there are many who are sympathetic to this young mom.  Even the Sheriff who arrested her said that he did not view her as a monster but a young mother who didn’t know which way to turn. "This wasn’t a hardened criminal," he told reporters. "This was a young lady in trouble, in trouble in more ways than she realized."

Yes, she was stressed.  Yes she was broke.  Yes she was depressed.  Many of us have been all of these.  She may even be suffering from postpartum depression.  Guess what, even mental illness is no excuse for murder!  Your thoughts? 

But before you answer, watch this video clip to see how even animals are prewired to love and protect babies.

Happy Parenting

If you are someone you know is experiencing symptoms of postpartum depression (ie. feeling sad, hopeless, and overwhelmed, crying a lot), please speak with your physician for guidance and proper treatment.  Killing anyone should not be viewed as an option, and thoughts of homicide and/or suicide serve as an indication that immediate intervention in needed.

PostPartum Education For Parents

Postpartum Support International

An open and honest blog about what matters most...families and children!!!


  1. WOW! Well the video clip of the animals is amazing!! Especially the leopard and the monkey!! WOW!!! As for the mom who killed her 2 sons. I have no sympathy for her. If she had enough sense to strap them in the car after she killed them, then she had enough sense NOT to kill 'em at all! I have four kids, we're struggling and my kids get on my LAST nerve but I would never hurt them and especially never kill them!!! I know stuff gets hard and seems unbareable at times but my goodness. I know mentall illness can be a beast but dang!! If she HAD a mental illness someone (her mother especially) should have been aware of some signs or something!! Or did she just snap? I dunno. Anyway, that's an unfortunate story.

  2. Hi Kristen!,

    That clip is really touching, isn't it? I'm with you when you say that you just don't get how a mom could do something like this! We all go through many ups and downs in life, and yup'...being a parent is not easy. But murder is simply not okay (even if you are mentally ill).