Who Is Veronica Youngblood? Virginia Mom Who Gave Daughters, 15 and 5, Melatonin Gummies Before Shooting Them Dead Jailed for 78 Years

Youngblood confessed to detectives that she had meticulously planned to kill both her daughters and then herself, following a prolonged and contentious custody battle.

A former prostitute who sedated her two daughters with melatonin-laced gummy bears before fatally shooting them has been sentenced to 78 years in prison. Veronica Youngblood, 38, was handed down a hefty sentence after she was found guilty of two counts of first-degree murder and two counts of felony firearm use in March.

Veronica was arrested in August 2018 after shooting her daughters Sharon Castro, 15, and Brooklynn Youngblood, 5, in their beds in their apartment in McLean, Virginia after drugging them with melatonin gummies. Prior to her sentencing on Friday, Youngblood spoke for over 30 minutes, discussing her daughters and the challenges she faced while raising them.

Murderer Mother

Veronica Youngblood
Veronica Youngblood Twitter

Brooklynn, who died at the scene, suffered a single gunshot wound to the head. On the other hand, Sharon was shot once in the back and once in the chest, succumbing to her injuries at the hospital.

In a harrowing turn of events, the teen managed to make a distressing 911 call after being shot, bravely informing the dispatcher that her mother was the one who had fired the gun.

Jurors who heard Sharon's distressing 911 call had a traumatic impact on them during the two-week trial. The intensity of the call was such that the jurors requested therapy to help them cope with the emotional toll it had taken on them.

Youngblood confessed to detectives that she had meticulously planned to kill both her daughters and then herself, following a prolonged and contentious custody battle.

Veronica Youngblood
Veronica Youngblood with her then 15-year-old daughter Sharon Castro Twitter

As her teenage daughter lay fatally wounded, she made a call to her ex-husband, Ron Youngblood, to tell him that she hated him and she had shot dead their children. He had originally intended to relocate to Missouri with both his daughters but then decided to only take Brooklynn as per his ex-wife's request.

Youngblood bought the handgun she used in this tragic incident just nine days before carrying out the distressing slayings.

Pleaded Not Guilty till the Last Day

The mom of two called herself a "good mother" at her sentencing, saying "something happened" in her brain.

Veronica Youngblood
Veronica Youngblood's estranged husband with her two daughters Twitter

Youngblood pleaded not guilty during the trial on grounds of insanity, but this plea was rejected. The jury did not accept that "mental illness" played a significant role in Youngblood's actions of administering sleeping gummies to her children before fatally shooting them.

During the proceedings, the defense had requested that the two murder sentences be served concurrently, which would have reduced the total sentence from 78 years to 42 years.

However, Fairfax County Circuit Court Judge Randy Bellows upheld the jury's recommendation for consecutive sentences, seeing no reason to alter their decision.

Judge Bellows said at the sentencing: "Mothers and fathers have many responsibilities, but none is more grave than keeping their children safe. Tragically, their mother became the instrument of their death."

Prosecutor Kelsey Gill said that the killings were deliberate, pointing out that Youngblood had purchased the gun she used a week prior to the tragic event. Gill expressed in court, 'There really aren't words that can describe the depravity with which Ms. Youngblood planned and carried out the execution of her children."

Veronica Youngblood
Veronica Youngblood with her two daughters who she sedated and then shot dead in their beds Twitter

Public defender Dawn Butorac mentioned an expectation of Youngblood appealing the decision.

Following the sentencing hearing, Fairfax County Commonwealth's Attorney Steve Descano released a statement, acknowledging that no outcome can restore the lives taken from these children.

However, he said that the sentence handed down is a form of justice for the grieving family.

Youngblood who grew up in poverty in Argentina, suffered physical and sexual abuse at the hands of family members as a child and gave birth to Sharon at the age of 16, and was compelled to engage in prostitution as a teenager in order to maintain her daughter.