Nancy Rommelmann

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On May 23, 2009, Amanda Stott Smith dropped her two children from a bridge in Portland, Oregon. Her four year-old son died; her daughter, age seven, survived. Amanda was arrested within hours, sentenced to prison for 45 years. In the weeks after the incident , coverage of the crime by local media contained virtually no background material—and never would.

Rommelmann was determined to find out Amanda’s horrifying decision had come from. She had covered enough crime to realize that, beyond the natural horror of a mother killing her children, there was a deep reticence to dig into how this incident occurred.

The more Rommelmann learned about what Amanda had for decades herself navigated – a fiancé who committed suicide, the giving up their child for adoption, Jason’s drug addiction and pathological lying, her own narcissism catalyzed by spite – the more sense, terrible as it was, the crime of Amanda killing her own children made.


In her riveting new book,TO THE BRIDGE, Nancy chronicles all her findings from this devastating case. Despite its complexity and resolve not to be told, the story of why a mother would seek to kill her children ultimately does reveal itself, in this gripping and important book.

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