Michele Boudreau Deegan gave twin daughters, 7, ‘large amount of sedatives’ before shooting them, herself dead
The sheriff’s office revealed Monday, November 2, that the Washington psychologist had drugged her daughters, Mairy Anneleise and Katie Elizabeth, with 'a large amount of sedatives' before the murder-suicide
SUDDEN VALLEY, WASHINGTON: A 55-year-old psychologist, who shot dead her sleeping seven-year-old twin daughters, had reportedly planned the deadly attack for several days. Michele Boudreau Deegan drugged her children before shooting them and eventually turned the gun on herself, autopsy results suggest.
The Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office revealed on Monday, November 2, that Deegan had given her daughters, Mairy Anneleise and Katie Elizabeth, "a large amount of sedatives" before killing them and herself.
The sheriff's office, in a statement, said that although it will continue probing the murder-suicide case, it has taken the "unusual step of releasing new details" of the investigation because the "tragedy has deeply impacted our community."
The mother-of-two was found dead along with her two children on the afternoon of October 24 when someone at a multi-level residence in Sudden Valley called the authorities, saying that he had found his landlord, Deegan, unresponsive. An initial investigation into the case revealed that Deegan was embroiled in a custody dispute over the children with her estranged husband. Detectives now believe that the custody battle was the primary motive of the deadly shootings. The tragedy occurred just four days after a judge granted joint custody to Deegan and her former partner, who has not been named.
Sheriff Bill Elfo, in a statement, said: "Ms. Boudreau planned this event over the course of several days prior to the discovery of the bodies. She clearly stated her suicidal ideations and that she would never leave her daughters alone without her." The sheriff added that investigators have "ruled out any involvement from Ms. Boudreau’s estranged husband in the incident. His whereabouts during the timeline have all been accounted for and he has a strong alibi. Evidence at the scene clearly implicates Michele as the only suspect in the death of her two daughters, after which she subsequently took her own life."
Detectives reportedly recovered a handgun from the scene of the incident, which they say was consistent with the murder of the two children and Deegan's own death. Elfo added: "Autopsy results confirm this as well as the fact that the children had been given a large amount of sedatives which probably rendered them incoherent at the time of the incident."
According to Deegan's professional website, she had been working as a licensed psychotherapist. "My goal is to teach clients new ways of perceiving their problem, healthy coping behaviors for responding to their problem, and healthy attitudes & communication skills for working with their families, partners, or work environment so they can make changes in their own life," the front page of the site read.
Deegan, on the day of the shooting, had reportedly shared multiple posts about narcissism on her professional Facebook page. The posts also included an article titled ‘Narcissistic Parents Are Literally Incapable of Loving Their Children'. The mother-of-two, in a separate post, also shared a link to a Psychology Today article titled, ‘7 Ways Covert Narcissist Parents Groom Their Children for Abuse’. In the tagline of the link, it reads: "Kind to be cruel? Is your 'nice' parent killing you softly?"
One of Deegan's friends took to Facebook after her death to write that the psychologist was "mentally ill." The friend wrote: "Michelle was a wonderful woman....she HAD TO HAVE BEEN trying (in an absolutely sick, unimaginably twisted way, obviously) to 'protect' the girls from a life with their dad without her. She was a kind and warm friend, bright and empathetic, a psychologist with a local practice that helped so many people, including me, and my daughter."
"Every time she believed her divorce was almost final, she would be dragged into a new frivolous and expensive renegotiation," she wrote. "She had been bankrupted by litigation, right or wrong, she worried for her girls with their dad.....(the sad irony is not lost on me)......this was a mental health tragedy, not a terrible person. I just really want everyone to know that Michelle did NOT abuse the girls, she loved them. She was just sick....and scared."