UPDATE: Child's death ruled a homicide; mother facing charges of murder | KAALTV.com

UPDATE: Child's death ruled a homicide; mother facing charges of murder

Updated: February 25, 2020 10:56 AM
Created: February 14, 2020 11:04 AM

UPDATED - 2/24/2020

(ABC 6 News) - Preliminary autopsy results for a 16-month old child that died last week are back and the medical examiner has listed the cause of death as a homicide.

Charges against the child's mother, 27-year-old Chelsea Olinger, of Mankato, have been amended to include 2nd and 3rd degree murder and malicious punishment of a child.

Court documents state the Medical Examiner at Mayo Clinic in Rochester listed the child's cause of death as a homicide due to "complications of multiple blunt force injuries."

A full autopsy report is expected in a few weeks.

Olinger's next scheduled court hearing is on Tuesday, March 17.


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According to Blue Earth County Attorney Pat McDermott, a 16-month-old child whose mother was charged with assault, has died.

McDermott confirmed the information with ABC 6 News Tuesday and said his office is waiting on the preliminary autopsy report which is expected late Wednesday or Thursday.

27-year-old Chelsea Olinger, of Mankato, was charged with felony 1st degree assault on Friday, February 14.

According to court documents, Mankato police were called for a report of suspicious circumstances to a hospital on the morning of February 10.

Hospital employees told officers Olinger had initially reported that the child fell down a flight of stairs.  She had told staff the child had been crying so she brought the child to sleep in bed with her, but when she woke up she found the child at the bottom of the staircase.  She told hospital staff that when she went to pick the child up, that's when the child became nonresponsive.

Documents state the child was later taken to Mayo Clinic in Rochester.

Olinger's first court appearance is scheduled for Thursday, February 27.



A Mankato mother has been arrested and accused of causing injuries that have left her young child on life support.

A complaint filed in  Blue Earth County charges 27-year-old Chelsea Rae Olinger with felony assault, The Free Press reported. Authorities say she brought her unresponsive 16-month-old child to the Mankato hospital Monday where surgery was done to relieve bleeding on the brain.

The toddler was transferred to a Rochester hospital. Court documents say the child has rib fractures, two broken vertebrae and a lacerated liver. Olinger told investigators the toddler fell down a flight of stairs. She was arrested Thursday at the hospital. 

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