EXCLUSIVE: St. Pete mom accused of murdering her son talks - WFLA News Channel 8

EXCLUSIVE: St. Pete mom accused of murdering her son talks

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WFLA's Melissa Beckman interviewing the woman in jail WFLA's Melissa Beckman interviewing the woman in jail
Tasha Trotter Tasha Trotter
CLEARWATER, FL (WFLA) - A St. Petersburg mother charged with stabbing her young son to death says a hallucination made her think she was actually protecting him, not killing him.

Tasha Trotter, 40, spoke exclusively with News Channel 8’s Melissa Beckman from the Pinellas County Jail Video Visitation Center.

"I'm not guilty of nothing but being a good mom,” Trotter said.

St. Petersburg Police said Trotter was still holding the lifeless body of her son Joseph Artis, 4, when the first officers arrived to the Jordan Park Apartments on March 28.

“He had a lot of blood and I picked him up like an infant, you know,” Trotter tearfully said.

She explains the attack as “an out of body experience” and said she did not realize she was hurting the little boy until she snapped out of her hallucination holding a bloody kitchen knife.

"I thought a dog was trying to attack Joseph. I was hallucinating. I thought people were trying to harm my son,” she explained. "I finally came to the realization it was my son, who I hurt and I shouldn't have. I thought it was a dog.”

Trotter compares herself to another well-known mom, once accused of killing her child.

"I think the closest thing I can think of that was kind of similar was Casey Anthony and she was a good mom too to her little daughter Caylee. I don't judge anybody, but I know what happened to her was out of her control and she was found not guilty.”

Trotter has entered a written plea of not guilty to a charge of first degree murder, according to Sixth Judicial Circuit Court Spokesman Ron Stuart.

“That was something that was out of my control. I didn't do anything. That was not my fault at all,” she said. “I honestly believe it was a possession, like a spiritual, like a devil possession, and I'm serious about that.”

Trotter says she's not violent, has no criminal record, and doesn't use illegal drugs. She says she has spent the last 10 years living in and out of mental health treatment centers. On the day Joseph died, she was staying in an assisted living facility and had walked to her mother’s house to visit her son.

“They shouldn't be having me held here. I need to be in a mental institution,” Trotter said about her stay in an isolation unit at the county jail.

A Pinellas County Judge found probable cause to hold Trotter without bond and to ban her from all contact with mother and her three other children, according to Stuart.

“I miss all my kids,” Trotter said.

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