Mother Gets 78-Year Sentence For The Killing Of Her Children

Police tape blocks off the crime scene outside a church where a man shot dead four people, including three of his children, before turning the gun on himself, February 28, 2022 in Sacramento, California. - A father shot dead three of his own children on February 28 before turning the gun on himself in a US church, police said. A fifth person also died in the shooting in Sacramento, California, though it was not clear if that person was related to what police said was a domestic incident.(Photo by ANDRI TAMBUNAN/AFP via Getty Images) (Photo via; Fairfax County Police Department)
(Photo by ANDRI TAMBUNAN/AFP via Getty Images) (Photo via; Fairfax County Police Department)

OAN’s Abril Elfi
11:33 AM – Saturday, September 23, 2023

A Virginia mother was sentenced to 78 years in prison after she was found guilty of killing her two daughters. 


On Friday, Veronica Younglood was sentenced for sedating her two daughters, 5-year-old Sharon Castro and 15-year-old Brooklyn Youngblood, with melatonin before fatally shooting them. 

The 38-year-old mother had been arrested in August of 2018 after the fatal shooting in their residence in McLean, Virginia. 

Before her passing, Sharon was able to call 9-1-1 and report to a dispatcher that she had been shot by her mother.

Reportedly, the call was played at Youngblood’s two-week trial and it was so traumatic that “jurors inquired about whether they could receive trauma therapy.” 

According to authorities, the convicted mother stated that she planned to kill her kids and herself due to a custody battle with her ex-husband who wanted to move to Missouri with both daughters. 

At trial, Youngblood claimed an insanity defense, which was denied.

Youngblood gave a testimony where she explained how she was born in poverty in Argentina, and was physically and sexually abused as a child by her grandfather, and turned to sex work as a teenager to support her baby and her younger sister.

After hearing her testimony, the jurors recommended the 78-year sentence. 

Defense attorneys had requested that the two murder sentences be served concurrently rather than consecutively, which would have reduced the sentence from 78 to 42 years. However, Fairfax County Circuit Court Judge Randy Bellows said that he saw no reason to reduce the jury’s recommendation.

“Mothers and fathers have many responsibilities, but none is more grave than keeping their children safe,” he said. “Tragically, their mother became the instrument of their death.” 

Prosecutor Kelsey Gill stressed that the killings were premeditated and that Youngblood purchased the rifle she used just a week earlier.

Before her sentencing, Youngblood said through a spanish interpreter that she had been a good mother but something had “come over her.” 

“I’ve been a good mother, but something happened, I don’t know how to explain it,” she told the judge through the interpreter. “Something exploded in my mind.”

Reportedly, Youngblood called her ex-husband after the shooting, leaving a message that she’d killed the girls and that she hated him.

Ron Youngblood, Brooklynn’s father and a key figure in Sharon’s upbringing, said he chose a seat in the courtroom where he couldn’t see his ex-wife because it was too difficult to hear the words of the woman who killed his daughters. He admitted that he knew his ex-wife disliked him, but “never once did [he] imagine she could do anything like that to [their] girls.”

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