BOSTON—A former Boston College student pleaded guilty on Thursday to an involuntary manslaughter charge stemming from what prosecutors said was her role in encouraging her boyfriend to commit suicide through unrelenting verbal, physical, and psychological abuse.
Inyoung You, 23, entered the plea in Suffolk County Superior Court in Boston after reaching a plea deal with prosecutors under outgoing District Attorney Rachael Rollins that could allow her to avoid serving any time in jail.
Judge Robert Ullmann sentenced her to a 2.5-year suspended jail sentence and 10 years of probation and barred her from profiting from her high-profile case, prosecutors said. If she complies with her probation terms, she could avoid incarceration.
Prosecutors said You sent 22-year-old Alexander Urtula in the last two months of their 18-month relationship 47,130 text messages, during which she waged a campaign of abuse and told him to kill himself and to “go die.”
Urtula, of Cedar Grove, New Jersey, leaped to his death from a parking garage in May 2019 hours before his graduation.
The allegations bore similarities to the high-profile Massachusetts case of Michelle Carter, who was convicted in 2017 of involuntary manslaughter and accused of goading her teenage boyfriend into committing suicide with text messages and phone calls.
You had been fighting the charges, and the state’s top court was scheduled in February to hear her appeal of a ruling that allowed the 2019 case to move forward. You decided to give that appeal up and accept responsibility instead, her lawyer said.
“Today marks the end to a two-year living hell that has upended Ms. You’s life,” her lawyer, Steven Kim, said in a statement.
Her probation terms call for mental health treatment, 300 hours of community service, and an agreement to not profit financially by selling her story.
By Nate Raymond