Michelle Carter Sentencing

(08/03/2017- Taunton, MA) Followed by her parents, Michelle Carter arrives for her sentencing at Taunton Trial Court for involuntary manslaughter for encouraging 18-year-old Conrad Roy III to kill himself in July 2014. Thursday, August 3, 2017. Staff Photo by Matt West

PLAINVILLE — The mother of an 18-year-old man who committed suicide after being encouraged by Michelle Carter is seeking $4.2 million in damages in a civil suit against the Plainville woman.

Lynn Roy, representing the estate of her son Conrad Roy III, filed a wrongful death suit in Dedham Superior Court last month.

Carter, 20, was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in June in Taunton Juvenile Court and was sentenced to 15 months of a 2 1/2-year jail Thursday. However, the jail term was stayed while she appeals her conviction to higher state courts.

The lawsuit alleges Carter was wanton and reckless in encouraging the Mattapoisett man to kill himself and for chastising him when he delayed doing it.

The two met in 2011 and carried on a relationship confined mainly to text messages and phone calls. The suit alleges Carter knew of Roy’s history of attempted suicides and mental health issues.

Roy died of carbon monoxide poisoning in July 2014 after placing a gas-powered water pump inside his pickup truck and breathing in the lethal fumes, according to a pathologist’s testimony at Carter’s criminal trial.

The lawsuit alleges Carter, who was then 17, encouraged Roy to commit suicide the night of his death on July 13, 2014, and told him to get back inside his vehicle when he got out.

“Despite understanding the dangerous conditions inside the vehicle,” the lawsuit says, “Ms. Carter ordered Mr. Roy to get back into the vehicle.”

The lawsuit also alleges Carter provided instruction and assistance to Roy on how to kill himself and failed to act knowing that the situation posed significant risk of death.

Lynn Roy’s lawyer, Jonathan Tobin of the Boston law firm of Anderson, Goldman, Tobin & Pasciucco, said Friday that the family wants to use the money for a memorial to Conrad Roy III.

“They would rather have their son back,” Tobin told The Sun Chronicle.

The amount of the damages sought in the lawsuit is based on an estimate of lost wages. Conrad Roy III had just earned his captain’s license and was working for his father’s business before his death.

Carter was served with the lawsuit July 21. No lawyer is listed as representing her.

David Linton may be reached at 508-236-0338.

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