An American mother from Maryland is accused of attempting to cut off the head of her autistic 11-year-old son.
Kristina Petrie, 46, of Aspen Hill, Maryland, was charged with attempted first-degree murder and first- and second-degree child abuse after her son told police that she held a bow saw against his neck and cut him with it.
On March 12, 2018, after the boy arrived home from school, he told police that he entered his home and saw his brother crying on the couch. He said his mother, Kristina, was crying and laughing. He said he then went upstairs to play a game.
At this point, his mother, holding a bow saw, approached him and asked why he wasn’t doing his homework yet. The boy said that he would start his homework at 4.45pm.
But Kristina raised the bow saw and blocked him from leaving the room. He said he wound up in a kneeling position and Kristina “jammed” the bow saw against his neck, dragging it back and forth several times.
He told police that Kristina tried to kill him and that he screamed. He said that Kristina was screaming and crying as well. He was able to get the saw away from his mother, then he escaped from the room.
His mother didn’t get to attack him again as his neighbour came over to the house after which his father, Andrew Petrie, returned home. Andrew then took Kristina to the hospital.
Andrew told police on March 15 that Kristina had called him and confessed that she had “attacked” their son with a saw. That same day, a medical exam and photographs of the 11-year-old revealed that the boy’s injuries were still clearly evident, even though three days had passed since the alleged attempted beheading. Police said that there were “several thin lines with the skin broken and scabbing” on his neck. The boy also had cuts on his shoulder and hand, as well as red marks on his back.
Staff at the hospital where Andrew took Kristina after the incident said that she told them that she felt “overwhelmed and that she was not doing enough to help her children with their autism.”
A hospital staff member said that Kristina also told them that she worried that her sons would “grow up to be a burden to society” and that they “needed to die.” The staff member claimed that Kristina admitted she wanted to cut off her son’s head with the bow saw.
When the staff member asked why Kristina had been brought to the hospital, she said that she had “tried to kill her kids again,” according to the court document.
A judge decided that Kristina should be held without bond on Tuesday. Kristina’s next court date is set for April 20. If found guilty, she could be sentenced to up to life in prison for the first-degree attempted murder charge, plus a combined 40 years maximum for the two child abuse charges.