The 55-year-old nanny barely reacted during the forensic pathologist’s testimony. Picture: WYNY-TV/Pool Photo via AP
The 55-year-old nanny barely reacted during the forensic pathologist’s testimony. Picture: WYNY-TV/Pool Photo via AP

Child’s frantic attempts to survive

WARNING: Graphic

GRUESOME detail has emerged about the moment two young children were killed by their nanny at a luxury apartment on New York's Upper West Side, before their mother found them soaked in blood in the bathroom.

Marina Krim, then 36, told detectives that she had entered the family apartment with her daughter Nessie, 3, after discovering Lulu, 6, had never arrived at ballet class.

Lulu and her brother Leo, 2, were found dead inside the family home.

She walked into the bathroom, where she found "the children dead in the bathtub" and nanny Yoselyn Ortega "killing herself" with a knife.

The sobbing mother made a fist and demonstrated "a stabbing motion towards her chest" as she said this, said police.

The court heard how Lulu made desperate attempts to protect herself while being stabbed.

Jurors have gasped, shed tears and asked to be excused in a New York City court during the trial of the nanny.

Images shown to jurors showed blood splattered over the walls while the paramedic who tried to save six-year-old Lucia (Lulu) Krim's life told the court, "That's the worse crime scene I've ever seen, other than September 11."

After discovering her two children dead, Mrs Krim was taken to St Luke's Hospital and reunited with her husband Kevin, a former CNBC executive, before seeing whether they were able to see their children's bodies.

"They held each other and cried," testified Detective Jennifer O'Connell.

Police then visited Ms Ortega in another hospital, where she was in a critical condition.

In court today, Ms Ortega sat quietly in the courtroom, her hair in a ponytail, wearing a grey top.

Marina Krim, pictured with her children Nessie, left, Lucia (Lulu) and Leo.
Marina Krim, pictured with her children Nessie, left, Lucia (Lulu) and Leo.

CHILDREN DESPERATELY FOUGHT ATTACKER

Two-year-old Leo Krim died after he was slashed with a knife on the throat. The knife severed a major blood vessel and almost reached his spinal cord, Manhattan Supreme Court heard.

His sister Lucia desperately fought her attacker as she was stabbed and slashed "haphazardly" all over her body, on her torso, neck, arms and hands.

Forensic pathologist Dr Susan Ely told the court the spread of Lulu's wounds and the variety of injuries to her arms and hands - some "like a cat's scratch", only deeper - indicated a violent struggle.

She said the injuries were "typical" of the type seen when people were conscious during a fatal domestic attack.

"It's very common to reflexively throw your arms up to block a knife," she said.

"The entire picture indicates quite a lot of movement and struggle to get away from this knife."

Lulu died from a combination of punctures to major organs and blood loss, said Dr Ely.

Yoselyn Ortega, 55, has admitted to the stabbings but pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity. Picture: WYNY-TV/Pool Photo via AP
Yoselyn Ortega, 55, has admitted to the stabbings but pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity. Picture: WYNY-TV/Pool Photo via AP

The pathologist said there was no evidence of a struggle in Leo's case, adding that it was a "reasonable possibility" the little boy was attacked behind, since the wound was made from left to right, which would make sense if the attacker were right-handed.

She said he is likely to have died fairly quickly from his "significant" blood loss.

"It was not accidental, it was most definitely intentional," she said of the killings.

Marina with husband Kevin Krim, a former CNBC executive, and their daughter Lulu.
Marina with husband Kevin Krim, a former CNBC executive, and their daughter Lulu.

NANNY'S KILLING DEFENCE

The children's nanny Yoselyn Ortega has admitted to killing her wards on October 25, 2012, but is pleading not guilty to murder by reason of insanity, saying she was not in her right mind at the time of the slayings.

The insanity defence is rarely successful in New York, where there is a high bar. Ms Ortega will need to prove she didn't understand the consequences of her actions and didn't know right from wrong at the time.

Prosecutors say the Dominican-born 55-year-old was envious of her employer Marina Krim and ­resented her demands for extra housework, telling police she "had to do everything" for the family for not enough pay.

The children's mother found her kids dead in the bathroom of their home. Mrs Krim was "hysterical", clutching her daughter Nessie, when police met her in the building's lobby, testified Detective O'Connell.

Upstairs, police were greeted by the sickening sight of a blood-soaked bathroom, the children in the tub and their nanny lying on her back with her eyes closed, her chest moving up and down as she breathed.

"The entire bathroom was covered in blood and there was what appeared to be two dead children in the bathtub," said Det O'Connell, who was a police officer at the time.

A knife lay in the sink and another was on the ground next to Ms Ortega, she said.

Assistant District Attorney Courtney Groves claims the nanny was envious of her employer and resented her demands for extra housework. Picture: WYNY-TV/Pool Photo via AP
Assistant District Attorney Courtney Groves claims the nanny was envious of her employer and resented her demands for extra housework. Picture: WYNY-TV/Pool Photo via AP

 

Earlier in the trial, there were emotional scenes when Mrs Krim, now 41, screamed, "Liar!" at Ms Ortega. As the grieving mother left the courtroom, she shouted: "You're evil! You're evil! And you... you're getting pleasure.

"Get me out of here. Please, get me out of here. Get me out!"

The judge told jurors to disregard the outburst.

Defence lawyer Valerie Van Leer-Greenberg argued in her opening statements that the nanny suffered from an undiagnosed mental illness and "lacked the ability to make any decision" on the day of the killings.

The trial continues.

emma.reynolds@news.com.au | @emmareyn

Lulu, 6, and Leo, 2, (pictured with sister Nessie, right) were stabbed to death at their New York apartment by their nanny.
Lulu, 6, and Leo, 2, (pictured with sister Nessie, right) were stabbed to death at their New York apartment by their nanny.
Mrs Krim found Lulu and Leo’s bodies covered in blood in the bathtub at their luxury Upper West Side apartment. Picture: AP Photo/Mary Altaffer
Mrs Krim found Lulu and Leo’s bodies covered in blood in the bathtub at their luxury Upper West Side apartment. Picture: AP Photo/Mary Altaffer
Jurors at Manhattan Supreme Court gasped and shed tears when they were shown photos from the bloody crime scene. Picture: AFP Photo/Getty Images/Spencer Platt
Jurors at Manhattan Supreme Court gasped and shed tears when they were shown photos from the bloody crime scene. Picture: AFP Photo/Getty Images/Spencer Platt
Defence lawyer Valerie Van Leer-Greenberg said Ms Ortega had an undiagnosed mental illness. Picture: WYNY-TV/Pool Photo via AP
Defence lawyer Valerie Van Leer-Greenberg said Ms Ortega had an undiagnosed mental illness. Picture: WYNY-TV/Pool Photo via AP


Cr Stewart: Council's 'secret items' should've been public

premium_icon Cr Stewart: Council's 'secret items' should've been public

Councillor questions public locked out of four items.

6 coast residents outline why Tin Can Bay needs $8.6m jetty

premium_icon 6 coast residents outline why Tin Can Bay needs $8.6m jetty

Cooloola Coast residents throw support behind jetty

Do not answer this number, it’s a scam

premium_icon Do not answer this number, it’s a scam

Here's what you need to know to avoid being scammed

Local Partners