State Police: Mother Arrested for Attempted Murder, Daughter With Autism Hospitalized

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BENZIE COUNTY, Mich. — A Benzie County woman will face attempted murder charges Friday for allegedly trying to kill her 14-year-old daughter with autism.

Kelli Stapleton, 45, was placed under arrest Thursday while hospitalized with carbon monoxide poisoning.  She was transported to Benzie County jail Thursday.

According to Michigan State Police, the poisoning was the result of a failed murder/suicide attempt by Stapleton.  She allegedly placed two burning, portable charcoal grills inside a vehicle with the doors and windows closed while she and her daughter Issy were inside.

Though she is expected to make a full recovery, her daughter remains unconscious and may suffer permanent brain damage.

“I have to admit that I’m suffering from a severe case of battle fatigue,” Stapleton wrote in her blog Tuesday about her experience as the mother of a child who has autism.

Officials say that Issy’s father received a disturbing phone call from Kelli the same days as that blog post, prompting him to contact authorities.  Issy was recently released from an intensive autism treatment program in Kalamazoo County.

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2 comments

  • John

    Saw this story on 3 last night. They also did a profile piece on this family and their daughter's battle with a rare form of autism earlier this year. Very sad story.

  • Notaclue78

    Please do not rush to judge this mother. Until you walk in someone else's shoes, you do not know. God speed for everyone involved…