PICKENS COUNTY – Suzanna Simpson of Dacusville was sentenced to life in prison last week for the 2013 murders of her two young children — Sawyer and Carly — following a four-day trial in Pickens County.
Simpson also was sentenced to 30 years for the attempted murder of her husband, Michael Simpson, 34, and five years for possession of a weapon during a violent crime.
Simpson declined to take the stand in her own defense. The jury returned with guilty verdicts on all charges after less than three hours of deliberation.
In May 2013, Simpson was found in a wrecked vehicle. According to arrest warrants, paramedics at the scene reported to deputies that she had stated “OK, OK, I shot my whole family.”
Her children, 5-year-old Sawyer and 7-year-old Carly Simpson, were found shot in the head repeatedly. Simpson’s husband was discovered “barely alive and struggling to breathe,” according to testimony.
Michael Simpson’s mother, Allison, spoke of her son’s injuries during the trial, stating that her son had lost movement of his left side and that a bullet had been lodged in the back of his right eye that could not be safely removed.
“He lost his peripheral vision,” she told the jury.
During the trial, crime scene and firearms examiner Kukila Wallace of the South Caroline Law Enforcement Division testified that the gun used in the murders was a .40-caliber Glock but that the defendant had also tried to fire 9 mm ammunition in the handgun at one point, which caused the weapon to jam.
A forensic psychiatrist testified for the defense that Simpson suffered from “schizoaffective bipolar disorder” and that she did not know right from wrong at the time of the murders.
According to the Mayo Clinic, schizoaffective disorder is a condition in which a person experiences a combination of schizophrenia symptoms — such as hallucinations or delusions — and mood disorder symptoms, such as mania or depression.
Reach Kasie Strickland at 864-855-0355.