Brittany Pilkington is the 25-year-old Ohio mom accused of killing her three sons. In a videotaped confession in 2015, she told police that she killed the three boys. Now her lawyer is arguing to have that confession thrown out. He says it should not be admitted because Pilkington has brain damage and post traumatic stress disorder.
Her lawyer argues Pilkington has brain damage from lead poisoning. He also says years of mental and physical abuse as a child made it easy for police officers to take advantage of her and coerce the confession.
According to People, two clinical psychologists gave testimony that Pilkington’s emotional trauma made her “easily influenced by detectives.”
Pilkington’s lawyer also said she has a borderline low IQ. Pilkington has an IQ of 94, and her lawyer says that means she didn’t necessarily know what she was doing when she waived her Miranda rights in 2015. Pilkington agreed to be interviewed without a lawyer.
Her attorneys say she’s dissociative and would tell police what they wanted to hear, even if it wasn’t necessarily true.
“Such was the case when Ms. Pilkington was interrogated by male law enforcement personnel over a nine-plus hour period,” her attorneys wrote. “She responded compliantly to officers even when her responses were not true because she was disassociating.”
Prosecutors in the case say Pilkington admitted to killing the boys, allegedly because she thought her husband paid more attention to the boys than to their daughter and herself.
Pilkington reportedly told police she smothered the babies with blankets. It all started in 2014, when Pilkington’s three-month-old son, Niall died. Nine months after that, her 4-year-old son Gavin died.
The daughter and the baby, Noah, were taken into foster care. Police investigated Gavin’s death, but did not find conclusive evidence of homicide. Noah and the little girl were returned to their parents, against the advice of prosecutors and child welfare advocates, People reports.
A week after the children were returned, three-month-old baby Noah died. That’s when Pilkington was arrested.
During the confession, she allegedly said she rolled over on the first baby in bed. Nine months after that, she said she was stressed out over the death of the baby, so she put the 4-year-old to bed, covered him with a blanket, and put pressure over his nose. She said she intentionally put the last baby in bed on his stomach and covered him with a blanket, and left him like that until his father came home, when she flipped him onto his back, but he was already dead.
All three of the children were discovered by their father.
Pilkington has pleaded not guilty in the case. She faces the death penalty if convicted. Her lawyers are trying to prevent the confession from being allowed in court.
(Image: iStockPhoto / BrianAJackson)