Thursday, January 07, 2010

Parents Stand by Son with Aspergers Convicted of Conspiring to Murder Them

The Independent UK reports that the parents of Christopher Monks, a 25 year old man with Aspergers Disorder who plotted with an internet friend to kill them stood by their son on sentencing and asked the court to show leniency.

The internet "friend" returned to the Skarnes home after visiting earlier in the day and attacked the parents who fended him off when he attempted to attack the father in his bedroom with a large kitchen knife.

""The pair were convicted despite the fact that Monks’s father, also Christopher, and his wife Elizabeth have fully supported their son, who was adopted at the age of 10 months. They argued that his condition meant he was unable to separate fantasy from reality and that he had never intended to have them murdered.


Sentencing the pair at Preston Crown Court, Mr Justice McCombe said he felt for Monks’s parents. “No court could fail to be moved by the unstinting love they have for their son,” he said. “In their own words in a letter sent to me they say ‘Whatever sentence is passed, we will serve it with him’.”
But he added both men continued to present a “significant” risk of harm to the public. “I recognise that Mr and Mrs Monks find this difficult to accept but the court has a duty to protect the public and ensure that they are not released into the community until that risk is eliminated.”"

The article illustrates just how much many parents of children with Autism Spectrum Disorders love their children no matter how severe the challenges they present.

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Stranded said...

It makes my heart hurt, because we know we would do the same. But some people would have you believe these problems do not exist.

farmwifetwo said...

I would probably be the first to request sentencing and in a mental health facility. I by no means believe for a moment someone with autism cannot be taught right from wrong nor be expected to follow those rules.

I prove it every day with my children.

I would be disappointed, but I would not blame myself, and I would lobby the courts for help... B/c if not, one day he may very well succeed.

Kent Adams said...

"I prove it every day with my children."

What does that have to do with my child? You apparently don't lock the doors to your house either because you say they "know better". Well, some of us have children with cognitive and compulsive disabilities and it is not our fault nor theirs. I find your opinion very insulting and I have seen this opinion of yours in other places. You have no right to judge a person or situation you have no clue or insight on. Attitudes like yours harm autistic children in all areas of life in the community. Please, keep your judgments to yourself.

Adrianna said...


Your position is logically inconsistent. First of all, if an autistic person can be expected to follow the same rules of society, then they should also be expected to face the same consequences. A normal person would not be in a mental health facility. They would be in prison, probably for life. So until you advocate for your hypothetically homicidal child to be sent to prison for life, or to be sent to the execution chamber in some states, if you believe in the death penalty, this statement of yours is meaningless.

Second of all, if autistic children can be taught right from wrong, why can't they be taught everything else they need to know? Why isn't your older son a perfectly normal child? Why is your younger son still so low-functioning? Am I to assume, based on your logic, that your youngest son is the way he is because you are simply too ignorant and lazy to be a parent? Would you appreciate anyone making that statement about you? I didn't think so.

Yes, allegedly, your older son has enjoyed great success. However, as you made abundantly clear again and again, he only had a mild form of PDD to begin with. That brings me to my next point. You routinely complain that Neurodiversity advocates don't understand you or your children, so they have no place telling you what to do or what the truth is. You especially hate it when people whose experience is primarily with mild autism speak about severe autism.

Yet the moment you had the opportunity, you turned around and did the same thing you hate so much in others. You assumed that what worked for you and your children will work for everyone else, no exceptions. To add insult to injury, you experienced your greatest success with your son who has mild PDD. What was that about applying the standards of the high-functioning to the lower-functioning again?

If you reserve the right to judge others and their children, then you can never again complain about ND advocates juding you or your child. Period. End of story.