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Closing arguments underway in Julie Schenecker trial | News

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Closing arguments underway in Julie Schenecker trial

Tampa, Florida -- Closing arguments are underway in the Julie Schenecker murder trial.

The fate of the New Tampa mother accused of murdering her teenage children will boil down to whether jurors are convinced Schenecker, 53, was insane at the time of the shootings.

Prosecutors laid it out chronologically for the jury.

They repeatedly referred to Julie Schenecker's own tell-all journal.

In her own handwriting, Schenecker writes about how she waited until her husband Parker was out of the country, unable to protect their children, 16 year-old Calyx, and 13 year-old Beau before killing them.

She talks about buying the gun. The waiting period. A trip to the casino, and then the "massacre", as she put it.

She shot her son Beau in the head as he sat retrained in the passenger seat of the family mini-van. Then again in his "mouthy mouth".

She then shot their daughter Calyx at her bedroom desk. And then again, in her mouth.

The case is being coupled with hard-to look at crime scene pictures which are being angled away from family members and others in the courtroom gallery.

"The overwhelming evidence, I submit to you, supports a verdict of 1st degree, premeditated murder," said lead prosecutor Jay Pruner.

Schenecker's defense says it's not so simple.

Schenecker, they say, is and was mentally ill.

They have defined that again for jurors, who defense attorney Jennifer Spradley said "must feel like amateur psychologists" after several days of testimony.

Spradley repeatedly re-assured jurors that acquitting Schenecker does not mean she will walk free. That, she said, is up to the judge.

"What your focus is going to be on is my client's state of mind. This is not a whodunit. This is not a question of what happened. This is my client's state of mind. And that's what you are to consider," said Spradley.

Jurors will likely get the case and begin deliberations sometime this afternoon.

You can follow the trial live on wtsp.com and monitor developments on Twitter - @ericglassertv


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