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Loralei and Heather Sims.......killed by their mother

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Loralei and Heather Sims.......killed by their mother

Post  Susan on Thu 13 Nov - 21:12

Illinois -- Robert and Paula Marie Sims gave birth to three children, but only one survived. A son born in early 1988 thrived, while their two infant daughters tragically disappeared.

In June1986, while Paula watched television a masked gunman entered her home, made her lie on the floor, and fled with her 13-day-old daughter Loralei Marie. Her remains were found by authorities in a wooded ravine behind their rural Brighton, Jersey County home.

The pathologist reported hand(s) placed over Loralei's nose and mouth suffocated her. The investigation placed suspicion on the parents but there was insufficient evidence to charge them.

The Sims moved from Jersey County to Madison County. The inquiry into Loralei's death became a cold crime.

Alton, Madison County -- April 29, 1989, Paula reported while taking out the garbage, a masked gunman ordered her into the house, before knocked her unconscious. When she awoke her 6-week-old daughter, Heather Lee, was gone. Initially the incident was treated as a kidnapping but Paula had no injuries, and the crime scene did not validate her report.

To obfuscate the time of death Paula kept Heather in the freezer, before dumping her in the garbage. Several days after the abduction was reported Heather's remains were found in a park trash receptacle. The garbage bag holding Heather's body was manufactured within seconds of and by the same machine as the bags found in the Sims' home.

The State removed their son, Randall, from the home.

Robert and Paula were suspects but the State wanted more evidence about their involvement.

Defense attorney Donald Groshong represented both of them.

A grand jury indicted Paula on first-degree murder, obstructing justice, and concealing a homicide.

The State intended to seek capital punishment.

Groshong discussed an insanity plea with Paula, but it contradicted her claim of innocence. Paula had no history of depression. Without documentation of postpartum-depression, innocence was a better defense. She insisted she was telling the truth during her trial and Groshong claims he believed her.

Paula maintained her innocence to the courts as she recounted the abductions of Loralei and Heather at her trial.

On February 2, 1990, after deliberating for two days, jurors found Paula guilty of two counts of first-degree murder, two counts of obstructing justice, and one count of concealing homicide.

Before sentencing, Paula confided in Groshong that she killed both infants.

During the sentencing phase a jury deadlock, and the trial judge spared Paula's life by sentencing her to life imprisonment without parole.

Madison County prosecutor, Donald Weber, said jurors were influenced by the evidence that the couple only wanted male children.

Eventually Paula admitted, without Robert's help, she killed the babies by holding Loralei under water and throwing Heather in the park trash barrel four days before her body was found.

A pathologist claimed Loralei's death was caused by suffocation, not drowning, and Heather's condition was not consistent with Paula's report about the length of time she was in the trash.

The couple eventually divorced.

On August 28, 1994, Paula filed a pro se post-conviction petition alleging Groshong provided ineffective assistance of counsel by dismissing the use of the insanity defense. Paula claimed Groshong was only dedicated to her ex-husband's defense.

She said she suffered from major depression and guilt because her husband did not want Heather and blamed her for having the child. After she announced the murders were the result of postpartum psychosis, she accused Groshong of ignoring the postpartum psychosis insanity defense and requested a new trial to determine if postpartum disorders diminished her capacity to understand the criminality of her conduct.

An expert on postpartum disorders, Dr. Diane Sanford,claims Paula suffered from a postpartum-based mental illness when she killed Heather.

Paula admitted her guilt and continued to take responsibility for acting alone. But Paula believed contributing marital pressures mitigated her guilt. And that Groshong's loyalty to her husband kept him from persuading the judge for lenience. Groshong explained if he had arugued that Robert's behavior drove Paula to infanticide, it would contradict her own claims of innocence.

It was ruled that Groshong's representation did not constitute a conflict.

Robert was not prosecuted.

September 7, 1994, the trial court dismissed her pro se petition.
USA Network produced "Precious Victims," a 1993 made-for-television drama on the case . Park Overall and Robby Benson star as The Sims. The Sims appeared to be the victims, when their infant is abducted and found dead, but when another child in the family is found dead several years later, a sheriff (Frederick Forrest) becomes suspicious.

_________________________________________________________________________________________________
\'Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves.\' Abraham Lincoln

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Re: Loralei and Heather Sims.......killed by their mother

Post  Susan on Thu 13 Nov - 21:21

http://www.topix.net/forum/city/elsah-il/T32GO8JQB51CK2P02

My name is Randy Sims and I am the biological son of Paula Sims. To those of you that think my father should be in prison as well, shame on you. You are spouting your mouths off on things you don't understand. There can be no doubt that he is innocent for those that know him and have seen him break down in tears whenever my sister's are discussed. The poor man has been through hell and how dare you condemn him like this! I love him very much. He has been a wonderful father to me.

Groshong didn't get him off, if you knew anything about the case you would know that. The DA never tried my dad with a damn thing. Groshong was a snake who pretended to be on the sides of both my dad and Paula but in reality he knew she was guilty from day one and let my dad think she was innocent. My dad is only guilty of trusting his own spouse. When she said she didn't do it he believed her. Don't you dare judge him for things he didn't do!

As for the clemency hearing, I was going to attend but it's a long drive from my home in Edwardsville and I don't want my picture to be on the front page of the newspapers. Luckily, they are going to read a statement I wrote during the hearing. Her hearing is on Monday, so please pray they keep her locked up forever.

If any of you wish to discuss this further I can be reached at rsims@lcmail.lc.edu (my college email).

-Randall Troy Sims

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\'Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves.\' Abraham Lincoln

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Re: Loralei and Heather Sims.......killed by their mother

Post  Susan on Thu 13 Nov - 21:38

Monday Oct 20

Paula's family are not innocent. Several of them admitted after the fact that they knew what was going on and did nothing to stop it. My own grandparents knew but kept silent. How am I supposed to feel love and contact people who not only allowed my siblings to die and allowed my family to be ruined financially, but who would have just as sure let me die too?






This is the book I was reading when I heard Maddie was missing! So many similarities.....but I dont think Randys father knew Paula killed the girls....

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Re: Loralei and Heather Sims.......killed by their mother

Post  Guest on Sat 15 Nov - 6:49

It is very similar except Sims got her punishment.

The comment from her son Randy is sad and shows how innocent family members suffer all their lives for what their parents do.

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Re: Loralei and Heather Sims.......killed by their mother

Post  Susan on Sat 15 Nov - 12:26

MsTaken wrote: It is very similar except Sims got her punishment.

The comment from her son Randy is sad and shows how innocent family members suffer all their lives for what their parents do.

And Kate and Gerry will one day get theirs too!

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Re: Loralei and Heather Sims.......killed by their mother

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