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Jessica Dutro Convicted Of Killing 4-Year-Old Son She Suspected Was Gay

“They beat my brother up, then he died,” the 7-year-old daughter of Jessica Dutro told a counselor. “I seen them.”

That was all the evidence prosecutors needed to charge 25-year-old Dutro with murder. Now, the abusive mother of four has been found guilty by a Washington County jury of kicking her 4-year-old son, Zachary, to death.

Zachary died on August 16, 2012 — one day after his fourth birthday — after having spent two days on life support from intestinal tears caused by abdominal trauma. The injuries were inflicted by his mother who repeatedly beat the child after she became suspicious he might be gay.

The case drew widespread attention in the media after the judge ruled that Facebook messages would be admissible in court. Dutro wrote to her boyfriend Brian Canady that she thought her son Zachary was gay, because “he walks and talks like it. Ugh.”

It took the jury a little over an hour to deliberate. Dutro was charged with seven counts: one count of murder, five counts of murder by abuse, and one count of second-degree assault. The unanimous verdict found her guilty on all seven counts.

Dutro, dressed in a zebra print blouse and black pants, reportedly showed no visible reaction when the verdict was read. Her family declined to comment after the court was adjourned. She will be sentenced on April 18.

On:           Apr 3, 2014
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    • hyhybt

      How do you get five counts of the same murder charge from one murder?

      Apr 3, 2014 at 2:51 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cam

      Remember, this is only one step away from the Laws that places like Mississippi put in place.

      You can discriminate against somebody because they are gay if it is your religious belief. It isn’t much of a stretch to say you can kill somebody because of a religious belief.

      Apr 3, 2014 at 3:49 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mezaien

      @hyhybt: You obviously know nothing about the justice in the USA. Surprise she didn`t got worse then that. I am HOMO dad to six and can tell you about it.

      Apr 3, 2014 at 4:23 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • hyhybt

      @Mezaien: Such a rational, eloquent explanation.

      Apr 3, 2014 at 4:39 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Billy Budd

      She deserves to rot in jail for the rest of her life. I am against the death penalty, but this kind of crime gives me an itch.

      Apr 3, 2014 at 4:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Captain Obvious

      Considering how much death is being depicted on tv and movies nowadays for no reason or for unbelievably stupid reasons it’s not surprising that mentally unstable people are all for murdering anyone they don’t “like”.

      Apr 3, 2014 at 6:46 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Billy Budd

      @Captain Obvious: This is not because of violence on TV. This is because as a child, she was taught that being gay was the worst and shameful thing that could happen to a person, and that gays should take a beating to learn the errors of their ways.

      Hatred and intolerance are taught when you are a child. Then it becomes almost impossible to make a change of heart later. This is why children should NOT be forced to listen to religions preachers. Religious education is a sin.

      Apr 3, 2014 at 7:08 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • DickieJohnson

      For the seven-yr-old sister of little Zachary to have witnessed his murder makes this crime even more awful. I hope Jessica’s sentence isn’t a light one. Anyway, child-killers usually don’t fare well in prison, and seem to be prone to mysteriously fatal accidents.

      Apr 3, 2014 at 8:42 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Captain Obvious

      @Billy Budd: I dunno I just watched a kid somewhere between 7 and 10 killing a teen on some stupid CW television show last night. Horrified I had to shut off the tv. I wanted to vomit.

      Sure there are plenty of other factors, I’m just saying murders like this will become a lot more common in the future with young minds being so warped early on. Flat out torture porn has officially made it’s way to network tv.

      I think blaming it squarely on homophobia is way too easy. We don’t know her parents, for all we know they are tolerant. This woman is grown, made her own choice, and was mentally unstable enough to take the life of her own child.

      My comment was about how easy it was for her to commit murder not so much about the act itself but just how easy it was. That is what I believe will become more common as more and more people are made desensitized to it.

      Apr 3, 2014 at 10:35 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • sejjo

      @Mezaien: Instead of prevaricating about how little he knows of the US justice system, why don’t you educate him … and me for that matter.

      Apr 4, 2014 at 1:33 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Geoff B

      It’s just too bad the top count was only 2nd degree murder. This case screamed out for capital murder and a death penalty. As much as I hate to say it, Texas would gotten this case right.

      Apr 4, 2014 at 5:35 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • frshmn

      @Captain Obvious: I don’t think tv or video games change much, murders have been on the decline for decades, despite sensationalized news stories. Humans have always been violent, open a history book, these are probably the most peaceful days on earth ever. We can all socialize openly at gay bars without threats of violence, which we couldn’t just 50 years ago.

      Apr 4, 2014 at 12:47 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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