Woman Stabs 2 Kids and Sets House on Fire

Blackduck, Minnesota – A woman in Minnesota has been charged with the murder of two children and negligence towards a third child after she allegedly set fire to a residence and fled the scene. Jennifer Marie Stately, 35, faced the charges after attacking two minors with a knife and starting the fire before leaving the house with a toddler on March 15 according to a news release by U.S. attorney Andrew M. Luger on Monday, May 6.

Court documents stated that one of the children died from stab wounds to the chest, while the second child passed away due to smoke inhalation from the fire. Stately was later spotted by a motorist in a vehicle with the third child, who had visible signs of child neglect and wounds, amid an Amber Alert that had been issued by authorities.

The deceased children, 6-year-old Remi and 5-year-old Tristan Stately, were identified as the defendant’s sons, according to an indictment obtained by the Star Tribune. The toddler she fled with is believed to be her 3-year-old son. The siblings were born in Red Lake, Minnesota, and attended the Red Lake School.

A vigil was held in honor of the two brothers by the school and the local community a week after their tragic deaths, as reported by the Star Tribune. Stately’s attorney, Paul Engh, stated that there is a “firm basis” for his client to plead not guilty, although he did not elaborate on the details.

U.S. attorney Andrew M. Luger emphasized the importance of collaboration between law enforcement agencies, stating, “This tragic case demonstrates the importance of close working relationships between the U.S. Attorney’s Office and our state, federal, and tribal law enforcement partners.” He further added, “Together, we are able to bring charges swiftly in cases such as this on behalf of the most vulnerable among us.”

Stately remains in custody as the legal proceedings continue.