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Poisoning Suspect Erin Patterson Threw Away Her Food Dehydrator After Lunch! And MORE Shocking New Deets!

Erin Patterson Mushroom Poisoning Suspect Dinner Explained

This case just keeps growing like a wild mushroom. To catch everyone up on the latest mystery in the world of true crime…

An Australian woman named Erin Patterson is under suspicion after she invited a bunch of in-laws over for lunch, and all four became violently ill. They were rushed to the hospital with “suspected mushroom poisoning.” One is still in critical condition but may just pull through. The other three died within hours. Meanwhile Erin and her children, who were all there, have shown zero symptoms.

The in-laws were the relatives of her ex-husband, Simon Patterson. His parents, Gail and Don Patterson, are dead, as is Gail’s sister Heather Wilkinson. Heather’s husband, Ian Wilkinson, needs a liver transplant if he’s going to have any hope.

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Over the past couple days a LOT of our questions have been answered as we’ve learned more from both reports AND from Erin’s own statement to police. How much of that you can trust is up to you. But here’s what we’ve heard…

What Was For Lunch?

Remember, police say the family members’ sickness was consistent with death cap mushroom poisoning. It turns out the dish they all ate? Beef Wellington pie, per The Guardian Australia. Many recipes for the dish do call for mushrooms. The question now is, what kind?

According to Erin’s statement, the mushrooms in her pie were a mix of button mushrooms from a major supermarket franchise and dried mushrooms she’d bought from an Asian grocery in Melbourne some months prior. She was not able to name the Asian shop.

However, a friend recently came forward and told that Erin was “very good at foraging” and often picked wild mushrooms in Victoria’s Gippsland region:

“The Patterson family (including Erin and Simon) would pick mushrooms each year when they were in season. It’s very common for people to go mushroom picking around that area. The family would go foraging regularly and knew what to pick.”

So she regularly foraged for mushrooms… And in the forest near Erin’s Leongatha home, death cap mushrooms do grow wild. Hmm…

Why Didn’t Erin Get Sick?

Erin also told police she did eat a portion of pie, just like everyone else. Early on the most suspicious aspect of this whole case was why she didn’t get sick like everyone else. Well, she claims she did!

The 48-year-old told cops she also went to the hospital as she was suffering from diarrhea and stomach pains. She was given a “liver protective drug” which saved her. Or so she says…

Let’s face it, you can fake abdominal pain and just tell medical professionals you had diarrhea, and they’ll take your word for it.

The question is, if she really did get sick — why didn’t she get nearly so sick as her former family? Why was she speaking on television about how innocent she was while the only other survivor of this lunch was barely holding on in the hospital, hoping for a miraculous new liver?!

Why Invite Her Former In-Laws?

One big question a LOT of folks have had about this story is, why the heck would a woman be hanging out with her former in-laws anyway? Who does that? Well, in her first statement to the press, Erin made it sound like they were good friends:

“Gail’s never been anything but good and kind to me. Ian and Heather were some of the best people I’ve ever met.”

But it wasn’t a usual gathering for Erin either. It’s not that they were super close friends. No, according to reports, she had invited them over to talk about winning back Simon, who had left her.

From what we’ve heard, Erin’s relationship with her estranged husband was NOT in a good place. They didn’t have what one might term a “conscious uncoupling.” But we’ll get back to that…

OK, so here’s the thing. Another source also told that Erin only held the lunch because she was trying to win Simon back, and the family was there as a sort of “intervention” for her! And the reason Heather and Ian were invited was because Ian is a pastor, and they thought it would be helpful to have him along! The insider explained:

“She wanted to get back with Simon and the family didn’t want Simon to get back with her. This wasn’t just a lunch, it was an intervention with the pastor as mediator. That’s why this lunch happened.”

Why didn’t the family want Simon to get back with Erin? Well, it may have to do with another shocking bit of backstory we learned last week. Apparently Simon became quite ill last year — even spending over two weeks in a medically induced coma. Not only that, afterward, a friend claimed, he said he suspected Erin had poisoned him! WTF?! Of course the family aren’t happy about the idea they’d get back together!

Oh, one more shocking piece of info about the invite list to that lunch? Simon was on it:

“Simon was supposed to go there for lunch but he pulled out in the last minute otherwise he would be in that death bed too.”

Erin planned on having him there, too?! That’s an hors d’oeuvre of a different color. If he suspected she tried to poison him before, and now he was supposed to eat this meal, it makes a lot more sense why she might have poisoned it — or certainly why he suspects her. But more on that later…

Why Did Police get Involved So Fast?

We just learned the reason police were called in the first place. After all, people die from food poisoning sometimes — why were cops so quick to investigate this as a possible crime? Well, according to Australia’s Herald Sun, it was because of one of the victim’s dying words!

According to this report, an ambulance driver called the police after hearing what one of the in-laws had to say before they lost consciousness. Their words were not revealed, but it clearly shook the first responder enough to call the cops! Whoa!

Erin Lied To The Cops?!?

Maybe the most suspicious thing a person can do in an investigation is lie to the authorities, right? Well, it turns out Erin Patterson did just that. And now she’s admitted to it.

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Police seized many items from Erin’s home — but they also found a food dehydrator previously belonging to the mom of two in a local dump.

She told police that she threw the cooking appliance away “a long time ago” — long before the lunch. In her new statement to police, she admits that was a lie. She’d actually thrown it away in the days following the lunch.

Yeah. SO SUS, right?? Why would she lie? Besides the obvious? Well, she has an excuse for that…

She says that in the hospital, Simon — her ex — confronted her. His parents and aunt had just died from a meal she served, and as previously mentioned he’d reportedly once suspected she had poisoned him, too. So naturally he jumped to conclusions. Erin wrote that she was at the hospital “discussing the food dehydrator” with her children. And her ex-husband asked her:

“Is that what you used to poison them?”

She claims the accusation made her nervous — that she got fearful just the suggestion would cause her to lose custody of the couple’s two children. So she panicked and threw away the food dehydrator at the dump right after that.

Um… she panicked and threw away a food dehydrator that she didn’t put poisonous mushrooms in? A perfectly good and safe appliance that would have been more evidence she did nothing wrong? That’s what she felt the need to hide in a landfill? So suspicious — and made even more so by the fact it came out before her written statement that police were checking the security camera footage to see exactly when the dehydrator was actually thrown away. Hmm again.

We have to say, the one part of her statement we don’t doubt at all? The notion her ex suspected her of murdering his family. THAT seems like a no-brainer given everything else we’ve learned over the last few days.

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Erin explained why she was making the statement, being proactive in speaking to the police investigating the poisoning:

“I am now wanting to clear up the record because I have become extremely stressed and overwhelmed by the deaths of my loved ones. I am hoping this statement might help in some way. I believe if people understood the background more, they would not be so quick to rush to judgement.”

How about YOU, Perezcious detectives? Do YOU now think you rushed to judgment initially? Or does Erin seem even more suspicious now??

[Image via ABC 7 Chicago/YouTube.]

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Aug 15, 2023 16:19pm PDT