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Indiana couple accused of abandoning adoptive daughter and moving to Canada



A couple from Indiana allegedly want to change the age of their adoptive daughter from 8 to 22 years and then leave them alone in an apartment while they move the rest of the family to Canada, the prosecutors said.

Michael Barnett and his now ex – wife Kristine were charged last week for double neglect of a dependent person. On Tuesday, a judge in Tippecanoe County issued arrest warrants for both.

Terrance Kinnard, a lawyer for Michael, told NBC News that his client plans to surrender to the police on Wednesday. According to court records, Kristine had not been arrested yet. The County Sheriff's Office was implicated in September 201

4 when Natalia Barnett told the authorities that Michael and Kristine had adopted her in November 2010, which is likely due to a sworn affidavit received from NBC News. [19659002] According to the writ, Natalia has a form of dwarfism, and hospital records from June 2010 showed that she was about 8 years old.

Hospital records from June 2012, however, showed that she was about 11 years old, according to the affidavit. In the same year, according to the prosecution, Michael and Kristine Natalia's age have changed legally to 22 years. The following year, they moved to Canada and left them alone in an apartment in Lafayette in Tippecanoe County.

Natalia informed the authorities in September 2014 that she had done so, originally from Ukraine and came to the US in 2008 through an adoption program.

She informed the authorities that she had not seen her adoptive parents since moving to Canada.

Earlier this month, authorities spoke with Michael, who confirmed that he and Kristine had changed Natalia's age in 2012, even though the doctors had determined that she was a minor.

Kristine Barnett speaks with Katie Couric about KATIE in 2013. Donna Svennevik / Walt Disney Television on Getty images

"Michael Barnett admitted that Kristine Barnett told Natalia to tell others that Natalia looked young but was actually 22," the affidavit says ,

Michael also shared inves with tigators claiming that he and Kristine had paid the rent for the apartment in Lafayette, but "Natalia is not financially supported after her departure," according to the document in Canada. The affidavit claims that the neglect lasted from July 2013 to February 2016 when Natalia moved out of the Tippecanoe County area.

The court document does not reveal how Natalia was able to take care of herself after she was abandoned in Indiana. The Tippecanoe County Sheriff's Office declined to comment on the case when it was contacted by NBC News.

Kinnard said during a phone interview that Michael was "upset" about the allegations and not the "hardened person outlined in court records."

According to Kinnard, Michael and Kristine believe they are victims of fraud and were led to believe that they adopted a child when Natalia was actually a young adult between the ages of 18 and 22 who introduced himself as a minor.

Kinnard also denied that his client had left Natalia, and told NBC News that Michael and Kristine had moved to Canada to look for an opportunity for their son, and paid the rent in advance in the apartment in Lafayette Natalia would have a place to stay.

Authorities in Tippecanoe County became involved after Natalia introduced herself as a child to another couple and asked for help, Kinnard said.

Kristine claimed in an interview with WISH-TV in Indianapol On Friday, Natalia was diagnosed with both a psychopath and a sociopath, and when she and Michael adopted her, she was actually an adult and not a child, they believed.

Kristine called the adoption a "scam," but did not want the outlet with more details. According to WISH-TV, Michael and Kristine filed for divorce in 2014 shortly after moving to Canada. The divorce was finalized last year.

In a Facebook post on Sunday, Kristine said she was shocked by the allegations against her.

false accusations, "she said.

Kristine is a writer whose family made headlines earlier when her son Jacob, who has autism, became what many consider a child of miracles in mathematics Published in National Media, including "60 Minutes" in 2012.

Kristine made no repeated attempts by NBC News to reach her.


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