Making the decision to adopt a child is not easy. It takes a lot to raise any child, assuming they are a child.
Kristine Barnett and her then husband Michael Barnett decided to adopt a 9-year-old Ukrainian-born girl before abandoning her at their apartment in Indiana and moving to Canada. The couple were brought to the attention of police and Kristine was accused of felony neglect for abandoning her adopted daughter, who was 3ft tall with disabilities. However, no one was prepared for Kristine’s defence.
Kristine told authorities that 9-year-old Natalia was actually a 22-year-old con artist who terrorised her family with death threats for years. ‘She would make statements and draw pictures saying she wanted to kill family members, roll them up in a blanket and put them in the backyard,’ she told Daily Mail.
During the interview, Kristine continued, ‘She was standing over people in the middle of the night. You couldn’t go to sleep. We had to hide all the sharp objects.
‘I saw her putting chemicals, bleach, Windex something like that, in my coffee and I asked her, what are you doing? She said, “I am trying to poison you.”
‘The media is painting me to be a child abuser but there is no child here,’ said Barnett.
‘Natalia was a woman. She had periods. She had adult teeth. She never grew a single inch, which would happen even with a child with dwarfism.
‘The doctors all confirmed she was suffering a severe psychological illness only diagnosed in adults.
‘She was jumping out of moving cars. She was smearing blood on mirrors. She was doing things you could never imagine a little child doing.’
Kristine decided to seek medical confirmation, having a doctor perform bone density tests, where it was discovered that Natalia was at least 14-years-old.
After her mental health began to severely decline, she was placed in a psychiatric hospital where she allegedly confessed her real age, as well as describing trying to kill family members. The case is currently ongoing. Natalia is suspected to be almost 30.