Surveillance photos have emerged that show the nanny charged with murdering two kids with them just hours before the crime, as she laughed maniacally in court while an NYPD detective testified.
The trial of Yoselyn Ortega, 55, continued on Friday in a New York City courtroom, where she stands accused of killing Lucia Krim, six, and Leo Krim, two, in an Upper West Side apartment in 2012.
The Dominican native Ortega has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity in the case.
Retired NYPD Detective Francis Brennan showed the court an image he obtained from surveillance cameras at Beacon Hardware, depicting Ortega with Lucia and Leo just hours before their murder on October 25, 2012.
A still image from a surveillance camera at Beacon Hardware is seen. The defendant Yoselyn Ortega, 55, and the two children are in the lower left-hand corner.
Ortega is currently on trial (above in court last Friday) charged with murdering siblings Leo and Lucia Krim in their Upper West Side apartment back in October 2012
Yoselyn Ortega, 55, is accused of killing the children she was meant to be looking after – Leo Krim (left), two and Lucia Krim (right), six
The Krim’s other child, Nessie, is also seen strolling with Ortega down Amsterdam Avenue – but the girl wasn’t home at the time of the murders, and was spared.
Marina’s frantic text messages to Ortega
Mother Marina Krim rushed home with Nessie, then three, after going to pick up Lucia from a dance studio and finding that the girl wasn’t there.
Ortega plunged a knife into her own throat just as Marina Krim opened the door to the apartment’s bathroom to find the two children lying stabbed in the bathtub, their eyes still open.
Brennan testified on Friday that he found Ortega injured on the apartment floor after he rushed to the scene.
‘I looked down and she was bleeding and her eyes were closed,’ he told jurors in Manhattan Supreme Court, according to the New York Post. ‘She looked dead.’
Jurors shook their heads at pictures showing the extent of Ortega’s wounds.
When Brennan was asked on cross-examination about Ortega’s condition at the hospital, he said he didn’t know. At that, she cried out, ‘Oh!’ and laughed within earshot of jurors.
Photos of two bloodied knives were shown to jurors in court this week before the evidence photos were released by the New York District Attorney on Thursday
One knife used in the stabbing murders was found in the bathroom sink just inches from a pink child’s toothbrush
At other points in his testimony, Ortega rolled her eyes and shook her head. She muttered something in Spanish while tightening her fist at one point.
Brennan described the children’s bodies being covered with white sheets at the hospital the night of the murders. Lucia was stabbed 30 times and Leo was stabbed five times.
‘I could see the extent of the wounds,’ the detective said.
The children’s father rushed back home from a business trip that evening and demanded to see the bodies, Brennan said. Nurses at the hospitals swaddled the bodies so only their faces were visible.
Earlier this week, the court heard that Ortega first communicated with police as she recovered in the hospital, using her statement to complain about the cleaning duties she’d been asked to perform in the Krim home.
Two days after the attack, shackled to a hospital bed and with a tube down her throat, she dictated statements to NYPD Sgt. Yoel Hidalgo, using an alphabet board.
She said: ‘I had to do everything and take care of the kids. I worked as a babysitter only and she wanted me to do everything. She wanted five hours of cleaning every week.’
In this harrowing hand-written notes penned after the killings, Yoselyn Ortega said: ‘I had to do everything and take care of the kids. I worked as a babysitter only and she wanted me to do everything. She wanted five hours of cleaning every week’
Ortega is accused of stabbing the children multiple times and waiting for their mother – Marina (pictured) – to come home and see the aftermath
In her first statement to police following the murders, Ortega complained about the children’s mother, the New York Post reports.
‘I had to do everything and take care of the kids,’ she said when she woke up in hospital.
‘I worked as babysitter only and she (Krim) wanted me to do everything so wanted 5 hours of cleaning every week.’
Ortega also said she didn’t want to clean, ‘because of soap’. Hidalgo told jurors she pointed to her pinky finger after making this statement.
In the days before the killings, Marina said Ortega had shown her a bleach burn on her pinky finger. Marina went out and bought natural cleaning products, she testified in court last week.
She also said she paid Ortega $100 extra per week for the five hours of cleaning, according to the New York Post.
Speaking about taking down Ortega’s statement, Hidalgo said: ‘When I got things wrong she would make a grunting, gargling sound. She would tap on the railing. She would show frustration. Even small facial expressions, she would make.’
Ortega has claimed she heard voices and was ‘touched by the devil’, which drove her to kill the young children in October 2012.
Psychologists have refuted this, but the 55-year-old – who is on trial – has pleaded not guilty, claiming insanity.
On March 2, Marina stormed out of the courtroom after screaming at Ortega.
‘You’re evil and you love this! You like this!’ Krim screamed, wailing ‘Get me out of here. Please, get me out of here. Get me out!’ as she was escorted out of the courtroom by court officers for a short break.
The judge told jurors to disregard the outburst.
Photos of a bloodied knife wrapped in a towel in the hallway (top of image) and blood spattered on the floor and walls were among the images shown
One bloodied knife was found wrapped in a towel in the hallway on top of a toy refrigerator
Two kitchen knives were used in the stabbing attack. The images were taken inside the apartment roughly seven hours after mother Marina Krim found her children’s bodies
Prosecutors say two-year-old Leo was stabbed five times and his six-year-old sister Lucia, also known as Lulu, was stabbed 30 times after she fought back.
Ortega had allegedly grabbed the two kitchen knives and butchered the children while their mother was blocks away at a dance studio where Lulu was supposed to be.
It is claimed Ortega waited until Marina had found her children dead in the bathroom before plunging a knife into her own neck so that she could relish in the devastated woman’s pain and horror.
Ortega was supposed to pick up Lulu from kindergarten and walk her to dance class before going home to put Leo down for nap.
The children’s mother had taken her other daughter, three-year-old Nessie, to a swimming class.
Marina had shown up to the dance studio to pick up LuLu and panicked when she noticed her daughter wasn’t there.
She frantically texted Ortega: ‘Where’s Lulu… Donde Estas… Where are you’ but Oretga never answered.
Jurors were also shown photos of the blood-spattered bathroom where the bodies of the children were found with their eyes open.
The bottom of the bathtub was almost entirely red.
At least two jurors wiped away tears as they took in the horror images, while others gasped and held their faces.
Ortega, who has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity, refused to look and stared straight ahead when the photos taken inside the apartment were shown to the court
Dr. Thomas Caffrey (pictured in court) the therapist who saw a Manhattan nanny just days before she stabbed two young children in her charge to death, testified in court on Thursday that she hadn’t appeared suicidal or murderous during their session
The photos were taken roughly seven hours after Marina found her children’s bodies and saw Ortega stabbing herself in the neck.
Dr. Thomas Caffrey, the therapist who saw Ortega just three days before the killings, said she hadn’t appeared suicidal or murderous during their session.
He told the court on Thursday she had booked her first and only appointment with him on October 22, 2012, to discuss a variety of different issues including anxiety, depression, and guilt.
Caffrey said there was ‘no evidence’ she suffered from delusions or hallucinations.
‘She didn’t tell me about any concerns about voices or visions, smells, tactile. No indication of hallucinations,’ Caffrey testified in Manhattan Supreme Court, according to the New York Post.
‘Her concerns seemed to be about her heart, her anxiety, her son, her sister, her money. She impressed me as a worried, anxious, frightened person.’
During his testimony, Ortega sat in court, shaking her head, and pursed her lips and told her lawyer: ‘No, no.’
She faces a minimum of 20 years imprisonment if she is convicted and could be jailed for life without parole.
The Krims use a Facebook page to post updates on how they are doing, writing about the arrival of two new children, Felix born in 2013 and Linus in 2016.
The couple started the Lulu and Leo Fund, which aims to support innovative art programs for children.
They recently posted a video message on Facebook asking that people mention the fund as their case becomes news again.