3 Arrested in Murder-for-Hire Plot; Mother Conspired with Daughter in Oatmeal-Fentanyl Poisoning: Police

(r-l) Heidi Marie Littlefield, 41, her daughter, Logan Marie Runyon, 22 charged in murder-for-hire plot.
Hamilton County Sheriff's Office; Montgomery County Sheriff's Office

An Indiana woman who was in a vicious custody battle with her ex-boyfriend allegedly laced his oatmeal with fentanyl and then strangled him with his favorite tie, authorities said.

An Indiana woman who was in a vicious custody battle with her ex-boyfriend was charged in a murder-for-hire plot. The woman allegedly killed her ex by lacing his oatmeal with fentanyl and then strangling him with his favorite tie, authorities said. The woman’s older daughter and boyfriend were also charged in the alleged scheme, officials said.

Heidi Marie Littlefield, 41, was charged Thursday with murder and two counts of conspiracy to commit murder in the death of Francis Kelley, 46, who was found deceased Jan. 18 in his home in Carmel. Also accused in Kelley’s murder were Littlefield’s 22-year-old daughter, Logan Marie Runyon, and Runyon’s 29-year-old boyfriend, Robert James Walker, according to prosecutors, the Indy Star reported.

On Jan. 17, Kelley’s other ex-girlfriend, Courtney alerted police that Kelley never picked up the child they shared together, their 9-year-old daughter on the day of his birthday. She told police the last time she had contact with Kelley was two days prior. When police went to the home, nobody had answered the door but when Courtney went with the police a second time, they discovered Kelley’s body on the couch, People reported.

Three days later, an autopsy concluded that Kelley died from asphyxia due to manual strangulation. He also suffered from blunt force trauma to the head, left hand, elbow and knees. A toxicology report on Feb. 7 concluded that he had fentanyl in his system, according to the Indy Star.

An investigation was launched after his death was ruled a homicide. During the investigation, police said they learned Littlefield had tried to kill her ex twice before. Last year, investigators allege Littlefield snuck into Kelley's house and laced his soup with fentanyl, and on another occasion paid her daughter’s boyfriend $2,500 to hire someone to carry out the murder. The boyfriend told police he used the money instead to buy drugs, MSN News reported. 

Police learned that the pair were in a custody battle over their 2-year-old daughter. The former couple had a court hearing scheduled for Jan 27, a report said.

During the investigation, detectives said they found texts from Kelley that accused Littlefield of tampering with his oatmeal. One of his texts said, “Did you do something to the oatmeal that was in my fridge? “You were in my fridge last night and it tasted funny after a couple of bites and now I am light-headed,” People magazine reported.

Littlefield denied it and replied, “What the actual (expletive) are you talking about?”

Court records revealed that Littlefield had long been planning the murder, the Indy Star reported. 

Littlefield became a suspect in the murder after relatives told investigators she had previously made “past statements saying that she wanted [Kelley] dead,” court records revealed. She alleged that Kelley was abusive and said, “she would be failing her daughter if the dude didn’t end up dead,” the Indy Star reported. 

According to court records, Littlefield, who had a troubled relationship with her daughter [Logan Marie Runyon] had allegedly planned to blame her daughter for the killing, the Indy Star reported. 

An initial hearing in the case was scheduled for Friday, the news outlet said.