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Mother found guilty in three deaths

Oakland woman, 23, faces life in prison for throwing her children into San Francisco Bay.

January 17, 2007|From a Times Staff Writer

SAN FRANCISCO — A Superior Court jury on Tuesday found LaShuan Harris guilty of second-degree murder for throwing her three children to their deaths in San Francisco Bay in 2005.

In issuing verdicts against the 23-year-old Oakland woman, the jury rejected a more serious result of first-degree murder and the special circumstance of multiple murder in the slayings of Trayshawn Harris, 6; Taronta Greely Jr., 2; and 16-month-old Joshua Greely.

Each count of second-degree murder carries a term of 15 years to life in prison. Harris was convicted last week of three counts of assault on a child causing death.

A reported schizophrenic who had been living in a homeless shelter, Harris said on the day she killed her children that she would "feed them to the sharks."

Her public defender argued that Harris was too mentally ill to plan such cold-blooded killings. Prosecutors insisted she was coherent enough to admit to the murders and methodically planned them.

There will be a sanity phase of the trial to determine whether Harris goes to prison or a mental hospital. She has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity.

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