News Every Child Deserves a Mother and a Father…
posted by June 8 at 8:47 AMon
A South King County man, Joel Zellmer, has been charged with first-degree murder in the 2003 drowning death of his then 3-year-old stepdaughter, Ashley McLellan. Bail has been set at $5 million.
This 2003 incident occurred three months after Zellmer’s marriage to Ashley’s mother, Stacey Ferguson, and after he purchased a $200,000 life-insurance policy for the toddler. There have been at least four similar incidents leading up to Ashley’s death, where accidents kept happening to Zellmer’s often insured stepchildren.
The first known case occurred in 1990. Zellmer was accused of breaking the legs of his then 4-month-old stepson in order to collect on a $25,000 insurance policy, for injuries sustained in what his mother reported as a nonexistent car accident.
I was also going to make this post a “Freaky Friday Twofer,” tagging it with Dan’s other regular Slog post “O They’ll Know We Are Christians by Our…” because on KING 5 last night, Zellmer’s “K-Fed Wannabe” son claimed his father couldn’t possibly be guilty because “he is a pastor in our church,” but I couldn’t find the clip and it isn’t mentioned in the news stories I found this morning.