Mother Told Dispatcher Teen Had Not Been Ill
September 17, 2007
RICHMOND, Ind. -- The first of two teenage sisters who died within days of each other was found by her boyfriend and was unresponsive and laboring to breathe, the women's mother told a 911 dispatcher.
Erin Stanley, 19, died after being found unresponsive in her parents' home Sept. 1, and her 18-year-old sister, Kelly, was found dead in the same Centerville home six days later.
Little information has been released on the deaths, though the death of Erin Stanley has been ruled a homicide by Wayne County officials.
Lonny Stanley called 911 at 5:15 a.m. Sept. 1, seeking help for her daughter Erin Stanley, according to a recording of the conversation that lasted about eight minutes.
"My daughter, she's unresponsive, her eyes are halfway open, she's blue," the mother told the 911 operator in flat, calm tones.
When asked whether the teen was breathing, she responded, "She's trying." She also told the dispatcher that the teen had not been ill, but that they'd had a stressful day.
Erin Stanley died that day. She was the mother of a young girl.
The 911 recording was released Monday by the Wayne County prosecutor's office, which had withheld the information for two weeks, saying the tape was part of the investigation. County attorney Ron Cross said the Sept. 7 emergency call in the death of Kelly Stanley was not recorded because of an equipment failure at the 911 dispatch center.
Kelly Stanley had helped detectives in their investigation into her sister's death. That included helping them gain access "to various computer sites," according to an affidavit for a search warrant for her parents' home issued Sept. 7.
Police found Kelly Stanley's body Sept. 7 after being called to her parents' home in Centerville, a town of some 2,500 people about 60 miles east of Indianapolis. A cell phone was found ringing and beeping lying near her hand, the document said.
The document said that both deaths appeared to have been caused by "similar action on the part of another party." Neither young woman had any apparent medical conditions that would have caused a sudden death, the document said.
A coroner has ruled the older woman's death a homicide, but authorities have revealed nothing about how she was slain or who might have killed her. An autopsy on Kelly Stanley was inconclusive, with authorities awaiting toxicology test results.
The Wayne County prosecutor's office released the affidavit Friday following a dispute with the Palladium-Item of Richmond over whether certain records related to the deaths should be made public or were confidential investigative records.
Police searched the home and the family car looking for DNA and other trace evidence, the document said. The search warrant also included a computer used by Erin and Kelly Stanley in the home, the hard drive and other memory devices that the document said may "contain significant evidence as to the perpetrator of these offenses."
Shipman said his office is staying tight-lipped about their investigation for fear of tipping off anyone involved in the case about evidence they have collected.