Murder charges: Stearns County mom silenced disabled child’s medical device alarm

A 35-year-old central Minnesota woman is charged with murder after allegedly silencing the alarm on an oxygen-monitoring device and allowing her severely disabled child to die.

Elise C. Nelson, of Paynesville, was charged Wednesday in Stearns County District Court with second-degree intentional murder and second-degree manslaughter in connection with the child’s death in June.

The child, 13-year-old Kylie Larson, had medical problems including chronic respiratory failure and severe developmental delay from a loss of oxygen at birth, the criminal complaint read.

Autopsy results from the Midwest Medical Examiner’s Office, while attributing Kylie’s death to complications during birth, also said Nelson “deprived care resulting in death,” the charges read.

Nelson was booked into jail Wednesday, appeared in court Thursday and remains held in lieu of $350,000 bail before an Oct. 8 hearing. Court records list no attorney for her.

Kylie’s parents sued in 2008 on their daughter’s behalf alleging medical malpractice by Affiliated Community Medical Centers and Rice Memorial Hospital in connection with Kylie’s difficulties at birth and were awarded $23.2 million by a jury.

However, the defendants filed motions with then-Kandiyohi District Judge Donald Spilseth in opposition to that amount. The judge ordered both sides to mediation, and a settlement was reached. David Alsop, attorney for the defendants, said Thursday he could not disclose the terms of the settlement, which remains sealed eight years later. […]

By Paul Walsh


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