In an opinion written by Justice Caleb Stegall, the Supreme Court affirmed Blansett's convictions for the premeditated murder and aggravated assault of her young son, Caleb Blansett, in Sumner County
In an opinion written by Justice Caleb Stegall, the Supreme Court affirmed Blansett's convictions for the premeditated murder and aggravated assault of her young son, Caleb Blansett, in Sumner County. The evidence at trial revealed that Blansett stabbed her son to death while she was suffering from a psychotic episode. On appeal, Blansett argued the jury instructions about her mental disease or defect defense were clearly erroneous because they did not list premeditation as a culpable mental state. In the alternative, she argued the instructions told the jury not to consider how her mental illness impacted her ability to premeditate the crime. Based on its recent decision in State v. McLinn, 307 Kan. 307, 323, 409 P.3d 1 (2018), the court held premeditation is not a culpable mental state that can be negated by the mental disease or defect defense. In addition, the court held the instructions did not prevent the jury from considering how Blansett's mental illness might have affected her ability to premeditate.
On Dec. 3rd, 2015, Cristina Janney wrote in the Wellington Daily News that "
Lindsey Nicole Blansett, 33, of Wellington was sentenced to 25 years to life in the 2014 slaying of her 10-year-old son, Caleb.
Blansett was eligible for the hard 50 sentence, which would have required her to serve at least 50 years before she would be eligible for parole.
Sumner County District Court Judge William Mott ruled Blansett’s lack of prior criminal history, her mental illness and acceptance of responsibility for the crime were mitigating circumstances that lead to the lesser sentence.
During Blansett’s trial in October, two mental health professionals testified Blansett was delusional when she beat her young son with a rock and stabbed him to death with a knife while he lay in bed.
The experts said Blansett suffered from bipolar disorder, anxiety and temporary psychosis due to extreme stress.
Blansett told the first officer that arrived on the scene that she was trying to save Caleb from a life of suffering.
Prosecutor Kerwin Spencer argued unsuccessfully that Blansett was aware of the implications of her actions at the time she committed the crime and therefore should receive the hard 50 sentence.
He pointed to the Blansett’s 911 call immediately after the murder in which she stated, “I am never going to get out of jail. You are going to have to live with your dad.”
Blansett was also convicted of one count of aggravated battery for the beating of her son. Spencer argued that sentence should run consecutively to the life sentence because of the fear Blansett inflicted on her son during the incident.
In a statement to police, Blansett said Caleb at one point woke up and asked his mother to stop hurting him. Blansett then proceeded to stab her son to death.
The judge sentenced Blansett to serve 11 months in prison for the assault charge to run concurrently to her life sentence.
Blansett has been in jail since the murder and will be given credit for time served. Spencer said she would be transferred to the Kansas Department of Corrections within the next two to three weeks to begin serving her sentence.
Blansett’s attorney Mike Brown informed the court of his intent to file an appeal. The judge set an appeal bond at $2 million.
Spencer in a press conference after the sentencing said he was disappointed the judge did not impose the hard 50 sentence but 25 years to life is still a significant sentence.
“I’ve done my job,” Spencer said.
Prior to taking up the sentencing, Mott heard motions for a new trial, a mistrial and a judgment for an acquittal based on lack of evidence. All three motions were denied."