Murder of Linda Andersen

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Linda Andersen (April 15, 1959 – January 18, 2003) was the victim of premeditated murder by her two teenage daughters, Sandra and Elizabeth Andersen, on January 18, 2003 in Mississauga, Ontario.[1] The names Linda, Sandra and Elizabeth Andersen are aliases created by Bob Mitchell in an effort to protect their identities. The girls' real names were put under a publication ban by the crown at the time because they were under 18 at the time of the murder.

Linda Andersen's murder case was broadcast on the television series Deadly Women in 2010, and was the subject of Bob Mitchell's book The Class Project: How to Kill a Mother: The True Story of Canada's Infamous Bathtub Girls. Additionally a crime drama film based on the murder of Linda Andersen, Perfect Sisters, went into limited release in 2014

Background[edit]

"Linda"[2] raised her three children as a single parent after their father had left. She had an alcohol dependency and suffered from depression. At the time of her death, Linda had two jobs.

According to police reports, "Sandra" and "Beth", aged 16 and 15 respectively,[2] had become irritated of their mother "wasting...money on alcohol". They were also unhappy that their friends had "better things like swimming pools and clothes". Because of their discontent, the sisters began to search on the Internet for ways to kill their mother. Sandra and Beth believed that by killing their mother, they would be entitled to insurance money. This compensation, the sisters resolved, would be spent on a trip to Europe with their friends as well as a large house, with a backyard filled with marijuana. The sisters decided to drown Linda because they believed it would be "fast and unspectacular". After formulating a murder plan, Sandra and Beth informed three of their friends, who all encouraged the sisters and laughed at the idea of murdering Linda.[3]

Murder[edit]

During lunch time on January 18, 2003, the sisters began giving their mother liquor in order to get her drunk. Their plan was to make Linda fully inebriated so that she could not resist their attack. Linda was also given six Tylenol 3 tablets[4] by her daughters, to slow down her heartbeat. Sandra and Beth then waited for the drugs to work. While waiting, the sisters communicated with their friends online, one of whom ended their conversation with the phrase "well good luck - wear gloves".

Sandra and Beth filled the family bathtub with water and took Linda to the bathroom. Linda had difficulty getting into the bathtub, because of the mixture of vodka and pills she had been given. After putting gloves on, Sandra and Beth gave their mother a massage. Within minutes, according to police reports, Sandra instructed her mother to lie on her stomach so that she could scrub her back. Sandra instantly pushed her mother's head down and did not let go. After four minutes, Sandra released her mother's head and found Linda to be dead. After having killed their mother, Sandra and Beth went with their friends to a nearby restaurant where they celebrated their victory. Later that night, Sandra and Beth called 9-1-1 and informed them that they had found their mother lying in the bathtub.

The 9-1-1 operator told Sandra and Beth to take their mother out of the bathtub and to perform CPR. The sisters cried over the phone, telling the operator that Linda could not be resuscitated. When police arrived, they believed Sandra and Beth's story.

The cause of death was determined to be drowning. Analysis of the deceased's bodily fluids disclosed very high levels of alcohol (around 400 mgs%) and drugs, including codeine and acetaminophen.[5]

Arrest[edit]

The defendants were arrested on January 21, 2004. The victim's death was officially considered to be accidental until a young male went to the police and told them that one of the defendants had confessed to him at a party that she and her sister had killed their mother. Following his report a car was provided to the young male friend, wired for audio and video by the police.[5] Soon thereafter, under judicial authorization, each defendant was recorded describing what she said was her role in their mother's death. Sandra and Beth were subsequently arrested, tried, and sentenced to 10 years in prison. They were released in 2009 and 2010 respectively. The sisters were separated by age. Both were devastated and could not have any communication with each other while they were in jail.

Aftermath[edit]

The older sister, Sandra, was released to a halfway house in 2009, while the younger sister, Beth, was released a year later. The girls' father unsuccessfully attempted to have Beth released earlier so that she could complete her sentence under house arrest in their hometown. Since both Sandra and Beth were under the age of 18 at the time of the murder, their identities were protected under Canadian law. After release, Sandra was accepted to the University of Waterloo with a $2000 scholarship; Beth traveled to Ottawa with the intention of applying to university.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "International Teen Killers". National Organization of Victims of Juvenile Murderers. Retrieved January 20, 2015. 
  2. ^ a b Mitchell, Bob (March 10, 2009). "'Bathtub Girl' still lies and manipulates, therapist tells court". Toronto Star. Retrieved January 20, 2015. 
  3. ^ Chambers, Thomas F. (January 9, 2009). "The Class Project: How to Kill a Mother: The True Story of Canada's Infamous Bathtub Girls". CM: Canadian Review of Materials. Manitoba Library Association. XIV (13). Retrieved January 20, 2015. 
  4. ^ Rennie, Steve (March 1, 2013). "Boyfriend in “Bathtub Girls” case has appeal of conspiracy conviction dismissed". Toronto Star. Retrieved January 20, 2015. 
  5. ^ a b "R. v. C.K." (PDF). nicholasguindon.com. December 15, 2005. Archived from the original (PDF) on January 20, 2015. Retrieved January 20, 2015. 

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