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Fla. mom to serve 2 life sentences for shooting murders of her teen children

A heart-wrenching double shooting murder of two young children was discovered at the Tampa, Fla. home of parents Julie Powers Schenecker and Parker Schenecker on Jan. 27, 2011. The Schenecker children, 13-year-old son Beau and 16-year-old daughter Calyx were found dead by police. Both kids had been shot in the head, twice. The mom, Julie Powers Schenecker, was arrested on suspicion of her childrens’ murder a few days later, followed by a formal charge of two counts of first degree murder shortly thereafter. The mom pleaded not guilty to murdering her children. Her legal team pursued a vigorous insanity defense. Schenecker’s murder trial got under beginning April 28.

‘I take responsibility. I was there. I know. I know I shot my son and daughter. I don't know why but I have time to try to understand that.’ ~ Murderous mom, Julie Schenecker

According to a May 16 report from MSN, the jury had to decide if the mother was in her right mind when she “aimed a .38-caliber handgun loaded with hollow-point bullets at her children's heads; or the defense's explanation that the former military linguist was legally insane at the time.” Following her two week trial, the jury deliberated for less than two hours on May 15 to find the mom guilty on both counts.

After hearing her verdict, Schenecker turned to the court, started to cry, and said that she was sorry. She was then fingerprinted and carted away to begin two concurrent life sentences in prison.

"I apologize for what happened, what I did," she said, crying. "I take responsibility. I was there. I know. I know I shot my son and daughter. I don't know why but I have time to try to understand that."

The dad, Parker Schenecker divorced his wife in May 2011. He also filed civil wrongful death lawsuits against his ex-wife on behalf of his two slain children.

Following the sentencing yesterday, the still grieving father said, “Today's decision for many reasons gives my family a great relief." The dad, still an active officer in the U.S. Army back in 2011, was on deployment in the Middle East when his wife shot and killed the two children, according to The Huffington Post.

Court testimony revealed that Parker shot her 13-year-old son twice – “once in the side of the head and once in his mouth.” The shooting took place in the family minivan while the mom was driving her son to soccer practice. Following Beau’s shooting, the mother turned the minivan back toward home and headed for an unsuspecting 16-year-old daughter.

Schenecker approached Calyx from behind and shot her once in the head and once in the mouth.

Schenecker wrote about the shootings in her journals, saying that she shot both teens in "their mouthy mouths."

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