Over a month after 6-year-old Lucia Krim and 2-year-old Leo Krim were fatally stabbed inside their Upper West Side apartment, nanny Yoselyn Ortega pleaded "not guilty" to charges that she murdered the two children. The court appearance took place in her hospital room at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center earlier today. Ortega, who has been under police guard since the killings, was handcuffed to the bed and was wearing a blue hairnet during the 10 minute proceeding; she didn't talk during it, but the Post reports her hand was trembling. "My client is profoundly mentally impaired and in need of medical attention," said her public assistance lawyer, Valerie Van Leer-Greenberg.
Ortega has been hit with two first degree murder charges, and two second degree murder charges for the October 25th slayings of the Krim children. After allegedly murdering the children, Ortega tried to kill herself by slashing her throat; she is still wearing a neck brace and had a trachea during her appearance this morning. While police are still trying to put together a definite motive for the killing, it's come out that Ortega was upset with the family over her wages, and was frustrated after financial woes created problems for her raising her 17-year-old son, who she moved here from the Dominican Republic eight months before the slaying.
"Yoselyn Ortega is charged with taking the lives of two innocent children who were incapable of defending themselves," said District Attorney Cyrus Vance in a statement. "This crime shocked and horrified parents around the city, many of whom entrust their children to the care of others both by necessity and by choice. My heart goes out to the family of those beautiful young children, and I hope that, with time, this family will heal." Her next court date is January 16th, following a psychological evaluation.