California authorities say a security camera captured a woman acquaintance mixing a lethal concoction for a WWII vet. KNBC's Vikki Vargas reports.
A California woman is accused of concocting a deadly mix of Oxycontin and yogurt to help an 86-year-old WWII veteran take his own life, prosecutors say.
Elizabeth Barrett, 66, of Laguna Woods, Calif., was arrested Wednesday and charged with one felony count of assisted suicide.
Prosecutors allege that Barrett met the victim, Jack Koency of Laguna Niguel, years ago at a Starbucks, but after a falling apart, the pair reconnected about a week before Koency's death.
On Sept. 30, Barrett allegedly drove Koency to the Neptune Society, an agency that offers cremation services, so that he could make his own funeral arrangements, according to the Orange County District Attorney's office.
The defendant then allegedly purchased yogurt, brandy and heartburn medication, according to the DA. The pair returned to Koency's apartment where she allegedly crushed up a lethal dose of Oxycontin and mixed it with the yogurt, according to the OCDA.
"Barrett is accused of giving the Oxycontin-laced yogurt to Koency, who ate it, went into his bedroom, laid down, and died," according to the DA. "After Koency died, Barrett is accused of removing his WWII medals from his wall and putting them in her car."
Prosecutors allege that Barrett waited for a while and then called 911 to report she discovered Koency's body.
"All indications were he wanted to end his life, and she was more than willing to help him," prosecutor Ebrahim Baytieh said.
According to the district attorney’s office, Koency “was not terminally ill, bedridden or immobile.”
During its investigation, the Orange County Sheriff's Department discovered a motion-activated camera that allegedly captured Barrett "crushing the medication, mixing it in the yogurt and providing it to Koency, and removing the medals from the wall," prosecutors said.
Barrett lives in Laguna Woods, where neighbors describe her as a mysterious woman.
"Very lively, energetic," neighbor Terry O'Brian said. "She's tried to tell me a lot of business deals she's into--she's publishing a book, she hopes it's going to be made into a movie, she works with handicapped people."
Barrett is being held on $25,000 bail and faces three years in prison if convicted.
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