Colorado Mom Charged In Death Of 7-Year-Old Daughter After Faking Child's Illness

Photo: gofundme / Douglas County Sheriff's Office
Who Is Kelly Renee Turner? Colorado Mom Charged In Death Of 7-Year-Old Daughter Olivia Gant After Faking Child's Illness

For people who have always wanted children, a parental instinct, or a motherly instinct, usually kicks in. This instinct means caring for your child or having a sort of “gravitational pull” toward the child and their welfare. Unfortunately, there are some cases where the care of the child becomes twisted in mental illness; specifically, Munchausen by proxy. 

According to WebMDMunchausen by proxy is "a psychological disorder marked by attention-seeking behavior by a caregiver through those who are in their care.The person with MSP gains attention by seeking medical help for exaggerated or made-up symptoms of a child in his or her care."

Though the most famous case of a mother subjecting her child to unwanted medical procedures and faking illnesses for attention is that of Gypsy Rose Blanchard and Dee Dee Blanchard, there have been other instances. Names like Marybeth Tinning, Blanca Montano, and Lacey Spears may fall to the wayside, but the stories all end in tragedy.

RELATED: What Is Munchausen Syndrome By Proxy? The Story Of Gypsy Rose Blanchard

And there’s one recent case out of Colorado that anyone with a heart is completely devastated by. Who is Kelly Renee Turner? 

Turner, who is also known as Kelly Gant, is being charged with 13 counts in the death of her 7-year-old daughter, Olivia Gant.

Turner is accused of first-degree murder, defrauding the Medicaid system of more than $538,000, defrauding foundations that donated to her allegedly terminally ill child, and ripping off the funeral home who arranged Olivia’s care. She also faces child abuse charges for endangering her 11-year-old daughter.

Olivia Gant passed away in 2017 and before that, touched the lives of many people by attempting to check every wish off of her “bucket list.” Her wishes included being a cop, riding in a patrol car, catching “bad guys,” and spraying water on a fire as a firefighter. The community came together and granted Olivia’s wishes.

Photo: Denver Police Department

According to an indictment against Turner, a cause of death is not specified. However, it mentions that Turner “withdrew medical care and nourishment” near the end of Olivia’s life. Turner also allegedly withdrew Olivia’s medical care, known as Total Parenteral Nutrition, administered through an intravenous line. 

RELATED: Who Is Alisha Newman? New Details On The Nurse And Mom Who Faked Daughter’s Illness To Get Attention

An exhumation of Olivia’s body in 2018 led to findings by the forensic pathologist, who said they found no evidence of intestinal failure or any of the conditions Turner claimed Olivia had.

And according to the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, Turner claimed her daughter had multiple illnesses, including seizures, intestinal failure, autism, severe allergies, and problems eating. She also claimed her other daughter was suffering from cancer, who was being treated with oral chemotherapy and had cancerous tumors removed from her neck.

Photo: GoFundMe

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In fact, Turner had been keeping a blog as far back as 2011, claiming Olivia, who was 13 months old at the time, had a misshapen head and vascular malformation in her brain, as well as osteomyelitis in her ear, and an immune deficiency.

In addition to blogging about it, Turner also preyed on the kindness of others, raising more than $22,000 on a GoFundMe.

The indictment also says there were multiple doctors who didn’t believe Olivia was terminally ill and that Turner even convinced a doctor to sign a DNR order. At least five doctors later told police of the doctors visits:

  • Dr. Kristen Park said she found no evidence that Olivia ever had seizures. Turner brought her daughter in at least three separate times, and Park advised Turner to stop administering the anti-seizure medication, or it would have serious side effects. 
  • Dr. Thomas Walker told police the child “did not exhibit the symptoms Turner described most of the time,” and described Olivia as “very active, interactive, social and fun to be around.” 
  • Dr. Robert Kramer also saw Olivia, and according to the affidavit, “did not diagnose her with any of the diseases that Turner wrote about in the GoFundMe page.” 

As for accusations of Munchausen by proxy, Turner completely denies it. However, the indictment says she was the first one to bring up the illness and said, “That has never been my case, like at all, whatsoever. You can ask anybody that stood by my side through all of this.” Once charged with Olivia's death, Turner did admit to faking her older daughter’s cancer.

RELATED: The Truth (And Sad New Details) About Dee Dee & Gypsy Rose Blanchard From From HBO's 'Mommy Dead And Dearest'

Samantha Maffucci is an editor for YourTango who focuses on writing trending news and entertainment pieces. In her free time, you can find her obsessing about cats, wine, and all things Vanderpump Rules.