LONGMONT, Colo. — A Facebook posting in January on a site dedicated to breastfeeding moms is especially eerie in light of the arrest of 34-year-old Dynel Lane for the stabbing of a 26-year-old Michelle Wilkins. “It`s haunting to look back and read those words and see that I said this is possible,” said Elizabeth Petrucelli. She’s a bereavement doula, who helps families with pregnancy and infant loss.
In the Facebook post on January 14, a woman who never mentions Lane by name wrote, “I have a friend whose wife is pregnant and he confided in my fiancé that she refuses to go to the doctor. Her whole pregnancy has been sketchy … she was supposedly due in mid-November then mid-December. Here it is mid-January and still no baby.”
Petrucelli responded online with a post that read, “This is a red flag. My concern would be for any pregnant woman being around her because if she is desperate, she may do the unmentionable and harm the mother and take the baby. She may be attempting to find someone whom she can get a baby from in order to present this to her husband. I know this is all conspiracy theory like but this should be taken seriously.”
Petrucelli’s fear came true Wednesday afternoon. Wilkins was seven months pregnant when Boulder County prosecutors say Lane attacked Wilkins for her baby. Police say Lane stabbed Wilkins with a knife, cut out her baby and left Wilkins to nearly bleed to death after Lane lured Wilkins to her house through a Craigslist post advertising baby clothes.
“I worried that, that she was going to do the unmentionable,” said Petrucelli. The day after the stabbing, the original Facebook poster added an update that read, “My friend who’s (sic) wife was supposedly due in November and never had the baby. I’m sorry to report that she is in the news now … I’m sure you all saw.”
Petrucelli said she was devastated by the news. “Very distraught, very upset to hear that it happened and you have that thought, could it have been prevented? We`ll never know.”
In her January Facebook response, Petrucelli suggested someone take the woman we now know as Dynel Lane to a doctor or a therapist. She still wonders how Lane’s husband didn’t know his wife wasn’t pregnant.