Sandra Merrifield was accused of killing her 18-year-old sister in order to take her newborn baby on the day she came home from Anderson Hospital after giving birth.
The August 1999 slaying that residents on Summit Avenue, the Collinsville street where the sisters grew up, say shocked them was scheduled to be featured on a new true crime TV show Monday night.
The episode of “Twisted Sisters” premiered on the Investigation Discovery channel and online at investigationdiscovery.com.
Police described Jossie Merrifield’s murder as “a calculated and vicious act,” according to Belleville News-Democrat coverage at the time.
They said Sandra Merrifield, who was 22, hit her sister on the head with a rock on Aug. 11, 1999. Jossie fell in a creek outside of Collinsville, where she drowned. They said Sandra had been telling people she was pregnant.
Jossie Merrifield would have been a senior at Collinsville High School. She had another child, who was 2 years old then.
Sandra Merrifield lived in an O’Fallon trailer park with her boyfriend Everett Jackson. The BND reported that a detective for the Madison County Sheriff’s Department testified that family members said the couple talked about adopting Jossie Merrifield’s baby because Sandra wanted a child, and because Jackson might have been the father of Jossie’s baby.
The detective said he suspected that Jossie Merrifield changed her mind.
Sandra Merrifield surrendered to police and took them to her sister’s body. She told officers that she blacked out and didn’t remember what she did to her sister, according to a BND report. Two years later, she pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and was sentenced to 18 years in prison.
According to a 2001 BND report, she was to serve half of the 18 years with credit for time served. It wasn’t immediately clear Monday whether she had been released from prison.
When Sandra Merrifield was given an opportunity to make a statement in court, she apologized to her family.
“I want to say to my family I’m so sorry for everything that’s happened,” she said, crying.
Khloe Kardashian executive-produces “Twisted Sisters”and promoted Monday’s episode on Twitter.
The episode is called “Bye Bye Baby.”
Here’s the episode description: “Deep-seated envy between two pregnant sisters leads to a twisted murder plot in an unsuspecting Midwestern town. This unspeakable crime leaves the Merrifield family destroyed forever.”