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An Indiana woman was convicted of poisoning her ex-boyfriend’s oatmeal with fentanyl before strangling him to death with his favorite tie.
A Hamilton County jury found Heidi Littlefield, 42, guilty of murder and two felony charges of conspiracy to commit murder on Tuesday after a weeklong trial.
Prosecutors said Littlefield was the chief architect in a plot to kill Francis Kelley last year. The former lovers were in a bitter custody dispute over their 2-year-old daughter.
Littlefield enlisted an older daughter, Logan Runyon, 23, and her boyfriend, Robert Walker, in numerous attempts to kill Kelley between October 2020 and January 2021, prosecutors said.
Runyon testified against her mother during the trial as part of a plea deal. She agreed to serve 26 years in prison with another six years suspended. Walker was sentenced to 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit murder in May. A second charge of conspiracy to commit murder was dropped as part of his plea deal.
Runyon told jurors that Walker received $2,500 from her mother after agreeing to hire a hitman to kill Kelley. She and Walker spent the money on drugs, clothes, and hotel rooms, the IndyStar reported.
Runyon testified that she and her mother tried to poison Kelley three times between October 2020 and January 2021. She said they put fentanyl in his oatmeal twice and once in his miso soup.
She said initially they wanted Kelley to fail a drug test so Littlefield could get custody of their daughter, but eventually they decided to murder him, according to the IndyStar.
Runyon told jurors that she entered his home through his back porch or window with her mother’s help. She went into his kitchen because they knew he prepared his oatmeal the night before and would then leave it in the refrigerator.
During the third attempted poisoning on January 14 of last year, she pushed his almond toppings to the side and placed fentanyl in the oatmeal and then covered it back up.
That same day she walked around Kelley’s home, because she reportedly wanted to know what kind of person he was. She took a matchbook and a pair of Apple headphones from his home. A short time later, she asked her mother to come pick her up.
The next day Kelley sent a text to Littlefield asking if she had put something in his oatmeal, as previously reported by Oxygen.com.
“Did you do something to the oatmeal that was in my fridge?” Kelley asked.
“What the actual (expletive) are you talking about????” Littlefield wrote back.
“You were in my fridge last night and it tasted funny after a couple bites and now I am lightheaded,” Kelley texted.
Littlefield responded several times, denying she had put anything in his oatmeal. Her final messages were never opened.
Prosecutors asked Runyon why she agreed to help her mother, and she said she wanted to improve their relationship.
“Because I love her and because we never really had a good relationship,” Runyon said, according to the IndyStar.
Runyan said that her mother agreed to compensate her if they were caught and she took the fall.
If they were not caught, Littlefield said she would share a portion of Kelley’s million-dollar life insurance plan with her. Littlefield told her she could use the money to buy a home and “help me get on my feet.”
Runyon told jurors that they snuck into his home on Jan. 15 and found Kelley face-down on the floor and struggling to breathe.
She said Littlefield asked her to try and break his neck. Runyon said she tried to lift him up, but he was too heavy. She said Littlefield then went upstairs and returned with his favorite tie and wrapped it around his neck.
Runyon said Littlefield wanted to go eat after the murder.
“Where do you wanna go eat?” she said, according to Runyon. “Are you hungry?”
They went to a sandwich shop and Littlefield threw the tie in the trash.
She also explained her recent tattoos -- a teardrop and a cross, the IndyStar reported.
Runyon said that the teardrop meant she “had taken a life.” The cross was her hope that God would one day forgive her.
Littlefield’s sentencing is scheduled for October.
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