Lauren Dickason sleeps with teddy bears made from children’s clothes while she awaits sentencing

19 December 2023 - 10:55
By TimesLIVE
'I'm blessed', Lauren Dickason shared on Facebook in November 2020 when the family were celebrating the twins' birthday.
Image: Lauren Dickason via Facebook 'I'm blessed', Lauren Dickason shared on Facebook in November 2020 when the family were celebrating the twins' birthday.

Former Pretoria doctor Lauren Dickason, who was scheduled on Tuesday to hear her sentence for murdering her three children, will instead wait until at least February for a New Zealand court to deliver its decision.

The New Zealand Herald reported she is expected to receive a life sentence, with the court to decide on a minimum non-parole period. It will also pronounce on where she will serve the start of her term of imprisonment, in jail or at the psychiatric facility where she has been held since shortly after the murders in September 2021.

A nominal date of February 2 has been allocated for her case to be called. On that date, however, a new sentencing hearing could be set, the newspaper said.

Dickason recently revealed she is sleeping with teddy bears made out of clothing belonging to her late daughters Liané, six, and twins Maya and Karla, two, Stuff magazine reported.

Their names are embroidered on the feet of the teddy bears and she sleeps with them to remember the “wonderful cuddles” she used to have with her children.

This was revealed in a letter written by Dickason to online supporters thanking them for reaching out to her.

Dickason was found guilty in August of murdering the three girls three weeks after emigrating to New Zealand. She strangled them with cable ties and smothered them to death.

The court heard evidence that Dickason had struggled to bond with the children and had only conceived after multiple rounds of IVF. She suffered from postpartum depression after the births, which compounded mental health issues including anxiety since her teenage years. 

The defence argued she'd thought it would be kindest to take the children “to heaven” with her when she committed suicide.

The prosecution's case was that while she had been depressed, Dickason had known what she was doing but did not contemplate stopping. She struggled to adapt to motherhood and was resentful at the way the children got in the way of her relationship with her husband Graham.

Before convicting her of murder instead of a lesser charge, the jury had asked to rewatch Dickason's police interview shortly after the murders in which she confessed to killing the children and admitted to having had prior thoughts of murdering them.

Police also asked Dickason about the girls' reactions to what she was doing to them, saying: “Were they saying anything to you, Lauren?” She replied: “Not the two little ones, but the oldest one was very angry and wants to know why I’m doing this to them because I’m the best mum and she loves me.”