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 July: Otty Sanchez Says the Devil Made Her Do It

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PostSubject: July: Otty Sanchez Says the Devil Made Her Do It   Fri May 14, 2010 1:49 am

Otty Sanchez Says the Devil Made Her Do It
July 30, 2009
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When San Antonio, Texas police officers were called to the modest single-story home in the 300 block of Wayside Drive shortly before 5 a.m. on Sunday, July 26, 2009, where Otty Sanchez, 33, lived with her sister and her sister's two young children, her mother—who lived in another building on the property—and her own newborn son, Scott "Scotty" Wesley Buchholz-Sanchez, not yet four weeks old, none of them were prepared for what they soon discovered—no police officer could ever be prepared for such an atrocity as that which was found early that morning. In fact, the crime scene was described as being so gruesome that police officers scarcely spoke to one another as they examined it.

"At this particular scene you could have heard a pin drop," San Antonio Police Chief William McManus said. "No one was speaking. It was about as somber as it could have been."

When police officers walked into the unassuming home, they found Otty Sanchez sitting on the sofa. She was bloody, and had what appeared to be a number of self-inflicted stab wounds to her chest and abdomen, and it looked like her throat had been slashed somewhat.

"I killed my baby! I killed my baby! I want to die," she screamed repeatedly as she sat there. She eventually told officers that the devil had made her do it.

When officers found the infant, he was lying in a pool of blood on a bed next to a steak knife. The shock and revulsion those officers experienced to describe their reaction to what they had found would be an understatement—despite their silence that morning. Baby Scotty had been stabbed to death, apparently with the steak knife. They also found a machete and a sword that they at first believed may have been used in the attack, but quickly ruled them out. The baby boy had also been decapitated, and he had been skinned and gutted, and his face had been torn away, according to the police. Police believed that the steak knife had been used to not only repeatedly stab the baby, but to also cut off his head and further mutilate him. The cops also believed that Otty had used the steak knife to inflict her own wounds after the child had been killed.

Although McManus had described the crime scene as "too heinous" to fully discuss, he did say that Otty had eaten part of the baby's brain, and had bitten off three of his toes. According to Joe Rios, a San Antonio police spokesperson, Otty had told officers what she had done, and that she had been "hearing voices" before the devil told her to kill Scotty, who she had given birth to on June 30, 2009.

"She mentioned that someone or something told her to do it—she was hearing voices," Rios said.

"So that leads us to believe that she was experiencing some type of mental crisis. The baby had obviously been decapitated."

Otty Sanchez, according to police information released to news media outlets, had been having relationship problems between herself and the baby's father, Scott W. Buchholz, and the couple had separated on Monday, July 20, 2009. The couple reportedly had been making progress toward getting back together prior to the tragedy. Otty had apparently shown up to see Buchholz at the home of his relatives, where he had been staying since their separation, on Saturday, July 25, 2009, the day before the child was slain, but had become upset when Buchholz had asked her for a copy of Scotty's birth certificate and Social Security card.

Sanchez apparently hurriedly left the residence with Scotty, who was in a car seat, and had quickly placed the car seat holding the baby into the front seat of a car she was driving and sped off without buckling the child in properly. She had also left behind her medication, along with a diaper bag and her purse. Although the police were called and officers came out and took a report, little to nothing was done with regard to the incident, and by the next morning little Scotty was dead.

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The same day as the incident at Buchholz's relatives' house, however, Sanchez was seen at a local medical clinic for problems she was experiencing. Doctors who examined Sanchez at the clinic determined that she was having some kind of severe mental breakdown, and relocated her to Metropolitan Methodist Hospital's emergency department for additional examination and evaluation. She was released that same day because the ER staff had determined that "she was not a threat to herself or others." Some said, however, that she should never have been released that day. According to state law, health care providers cannot detain someone without their permission even though they may appear mentally ill at the time, unless the person is considered an immediate threat to himself or others.

"She was never aggressive, always sweet," said a neighbor who had seen Sanchez and Scotty a few days earlier during a brief visit. "She did seem to be living in a world of her own, but she must have been deranged. I feel so sorry for that baby, the little angel."

Devastated by the nightmare that had occurred, Buchholz, who adored his son, told the Associated Press that he wanted to see Otty Sanchez executed.

"She was a sweet person and I still love her, but she needs to pay the ultimate price for what she has done….She killed my son," Buchholz told AP. "She needs to be put to death for what she has done….She should burn in hell."

However, that's not likely to occur in the foreseeable future. Although Otty Sanchez was charged with capital murder with bail set at $1 million while she was in a hospital being treated for her wounds, a relative said that she suffers from psychological problems and had been "in and out of a psychiatric ward" and was obviously "not in her right mind" at the time the child was killed.

Apparently Sanchez had also told Buchholz that she had been diagnosed with postpartum depression and was to have been admitted to a hospital for treatment of the disorder. Another relative said that she had been diagnosed with schizophrenia and postpartum psychosis, which sometimes involves delusions and hallucinations. A relative had also expressed some concern that it was possible that Otty had been using drugs, but family members had not otherwise witnessed any warning signs that might indicate that the child, or anyone else, had been in any danger.

In the meantime investigators are looking into other Texas homicide cases involving postpartum depression in an effort to determine whether it should, or can, be viewed as a mitigating factor to help explain Sanchez's actions that fateful morning. However, if a court of law later finds Sanchez sane and convicts her of capital murder, she could face the death penalty at some point.
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