'Manchester by the Sea' inspired duo to kill son

This image released by Roadside Attractions and Amazon Studios shows Michelle Williams and Casey Affleck in a key scene from

'Manchester by the Sea' inspired NY parents to kill boy, prosecutor says

On Feb. 28, the home of Heather and Ernest Franklin burned down and their adopted son, 16-year-old Jeffrey, was found dead.

Heather Franklin's attorney refutes the allegations against her, saying his client is innocent until proven guilty.

John Cameron, the public defender representing her husband, didn't immediately return the Daily News' call for comment. If not released, Heather Franklin will have the baby in jail at the expense of taxpayers in a case that is "at best, flimsy", Trosset said.

He argued that the defendants had watched "Manchester by the Sea", a film that tells the story of a man who accidentally started a fire that ultimately killed his children, on February 28 - two days after the movie's star Casey Affleck won the Oscar for best actor and director Kenneth Lonegran took home the Oscar for best original screenplay.

McBride, the prosecutor, noted the Affleck character in the movie is told that you can't be prosecuted for accidentally killing your children. The parents were later charged with his murder (as well as arson and evidence tampering), and in a court transcript, Chenango County District Attorney Joseph McBride suggests the Casey Affleck film influenced the parents' actions.

Officials said the fire was reported around 1:15 a.m. March 1 at the family's home in the rural town of Guilford, 55 miles southeast of Syracuse. Officials have said the son had mental and physical disabilities.


The father told police he was away from the house chasing down the familys dogs when the fire started, officials said.

McBride said that Heather Franklin, who is pregnant, inexplicably left the family home and drove around until a fire intentionally set by her husband engulfed Jeffrey's body.

Ernest Franklin told investigators the fire started at the house accidentally while his wife was out shopping, McBride said. "Because of the damage to the body by the fire, the pathologist is not able to determine the cause of death". Neither has posted bail yet.

Mid-way through the grim meditation on grief that is Oscar victor Manchester by the Sea, an accidental fire rages through a New England home, killing three young children.

When searching for motive, McBride points to 33 year-old Heather Franklin's social media confessions, which indicated that care for Jeffrey-who had "bowel issues and he had urine control issues"-was "putting a strain on her".

Prosecutors in upstate NY allege an adoptive mother and father killed a special needs teen and attempted to cover up the crime with a house fire in a plot devised after watching the movie "Manchester by the Sea", reports CBS affiliate WBNG.

Misogyny played a role in US election loss: Clinton
Dortmund bus blast: what we know