When 5-year-old Timothy Wiltsey went missing from a carnival on May 25, 1991, the feeling was that something terrible must’ve happened, but no one ever expected the enigma that came to light. After all, as explored on ‘Dateline: The Blue Blanket Mystery,’ not only were Timothy’s skeletal remains found in a marsh miles away nearly 11 months later, but his own mother was the one accused of murder. Michelle Lodzinski has always maintained her innocence in the matter. So now, if you wish to learn more about the entire situation as well as her whereabouts, we’ve got you covered.
Did Michelle Lodzinski Kill Her Son?
Michelle Lodzinski was merely 17 when she gave birth to Timothy Wiltsey, just to become a single mother by leaving her then-partner George Wiltsey of Iowa within six months. The domestic atmosphere had allegedly become abusive and isolating for the high school dropout, driving her to return to her home state of New Jersey to start over with the help of loved ones. Since she received no child support, Michelle struggled even after taking up a variety of menial jobs and working hard because she couldn’t take out much time for her growing son. That’s why she once referred to herself as a “weekend mom.”
However, a significant issue for Michelle back then was that her romantic pursuits didn’t work out as the men her age felt like they were too young to take on the role of stepfather/family man. There were undeniably some responsibilities she couldn’t discount with Timothy relying on her, leading many to believe she considered him a “social burden,” which eventually led to her allegedly killing him. That’s especially because her former fiancé, whom she was involved with between 1986 and 1990, got engaged to another woman a month before her son’s sudden disappearance in 1991.
With that said, it’s imperative to mention a search of Michelle’s car, house, garage, and tapped cell phone (done within days of Timothy’s vanishing), yielded no evidence against her. She did have an unemotional demeanor in public (supposedly to avoid media attention), and she changed her narrative of the fateful evening a few times, yet she never explicitly incriminated herself. The fact that Michelle carefully staged her own kidnapping in 1994, followed by her conviction for stealing a former employer’s computer in 1997, didn’t really help the mass’ perception of her, though.
Despite this, things only started rolling during reinvestigations in the 2010s, and a babysitter revealed that the blanket found near Timothy’s body was one they’d seen in their house while he was alive. These details comprised enough circumstantial evidence that the Middlesex County prosecutors asked for an indictment, resulting in Michelle’s arrest for first-degree murder on August 6, 2014.
Michelle’s lengthy 2016 trial, with testimonies from 68 witnesses, ultimately resulted in a guilty verdict and a sentence of 30 years in prison without the possibility of parole. She immediately appealed, only for the ruling to be upheld until the New Jersey Supreme Court heard the arguments not once but twice — the justices had deadlocked following the first hearing. The second, however, concluded with a 4-3 split court decision.
The judgment tossed out Michelle’s conviction and made it clear that she can’t ever be retried for the crime even if new evidence comes to light. This judgment read, in part, “Even if the [current] evidence suggested that Timothy did not die by accident, no testimony or evidence was offered to distinguish whether Timothy died by the negligent, reckless, or purposeful or knowing acts of a person, even if that person were Lodzinski.”
Where is Michelle Lodzinski Now?
By the time Michelle Lodzinski was arrested in 2014, she had married, welcomed two more sons into this world, and relocated to Florida, where she worked as a paralegal. Therefore, even though she now prefers to keep her life well away from the limelight, we believe she has since returned to her home, friends, and family in Port St. Lucie.
Michelle was released from the Edna Mahan Correctional Facility for Women in Hunterdon County, New Jersey, on the day of the Supreme Court verdict in late December 2021. Yet, her lawyer was the one who spoke to the press and conceded that his client was ready to jump back into the ordinary and just spend quality time with her children.
Read More: Where is George Wiltsey Now?