NEW YORK — The Manhattan nanny who butchered two children in 2012 was sentenced Monday to life in prison without parole plus 50 years, capping a harrowing story that has gripped the city for nearly six years.
Yoselyn Ortega, 55, was convicted of first-degree murder April 18 after a two-month trial in Manhattan Supreme Court.
The conviction, which carries a mandatory sentence of life without parole, sealed her fate of never seeing the light of day as a free woman.
It provided a much-needed measure of relief for the parents of 6-year-old Lulu and 2-year-old Leo Krim, who were savagely slain in the bathroom of their Upper West Side home on Oct. 25, 2012, while the mom was at a swim class with their middle sibling Nessie, then 3.
The children’s parents, Kevin Krim, 42, and Marina Krim, issued statements thanking the judge and jurors and the district attorney’s office.
Marina Krim, 41, went a step further, and called out the “evil defendant” and her “entire family of bad, unethical people.”
Her husband echoed her sentiments, but dedicated his statement to memories of their two slain children.
The city has watched as the Krims struggled through an unthinkable loss with an inspirational fortitude.
Their family grew by two after the murders when they welcomed sons Felix and Linus and they launched a foundation in honor of Lulu and Leo.
At trial, Ortega’s lawyer argued she should be found not responsible by reason of mental disease or defect — a bid the jury rejected after weeks of psychiatric testimony from experts on both sides.
Ortega stabbed and slashed the children in the rear bathroom of the second-floor apartment of the La Rochelle before plunging a kitchen knife into her own throat in a failed suicide attempt.
She settled her affairs by leaving her important documents for her sister and family heirlooms for her 17-year-old son — which prosecutors argued was proof she was of sound mind when she planned the acts of that day.
Assistant District Attorney Stuart Silberg argued she was driven by spite aimed at Marina and rage over her own personal failures.
“It was her intention to take their lives and to destroy the family,” he said at the sentencing. “This defendant to this day has shown no remorse. She has never shed a tear for these children. Why isn’t she in tears now?”
Little Lulu, who desperately tried to defend herself, sustained about 30 knife wounds, many defensive, while her younger brother suffered about five.
Ortega cut them both across the throat leaving the children no chance for survival.
“Every stab, every slash — each one had a purpose and that purpose was to end the lives of those children,” Silberg argued in summations.
A parade of police and emergency response workers who were called to the horrifying scene were brought to tears at the trial.
Jurors and members of the audience also wept up when Kevin and Marina — the first and last witnesses on the prosecution’s direct case — took the witness stand.
Ortega also cried a little just before the sentence was imposed, framing herself as the real victim.
“I’m very sorry for everything that happened, but I hope that no one goes through what I have gone through,” she told the court.
Tribune News Service