Woman who cooked poisonous mushroom lunch 'that killed three' says her children ate the leftovers
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Erin Patterson has provided police with a statement giving her version of events on a lunch with family members where three died afterwards.
On 29 July, the woman from Victoria, Australia, had invited former in-laws Gail and Don Patterson, both 70, along with Gail's sister Heather Wilkinson, 66, and her husband Ian, 68 for a meal.
She cooked them beef wellington and mushrooms and a day after the lunch all four had been rushed to hospital with 'gastro-like symptoms'.
Gail and Don Patterson both died in hospital, as did Heather Wilkinson, while her husband Ian is in a critical condition awaiting a liver transplant.
Erin Patterson was interviewed by police but was released without charge, though officials have said that she remains a suspect.
The 48-year-old recently sent a statement to Victoria Police where she gave a detailed account of her version of events.
Patterson said in her statement that her children had not been at the dinner with the rest of the family members as homicide police had initially said, but had instead been out at the movies.
She said that her son and daughter had eaten the leftovers from the meal the following night, but that the mushrooms had been scraped off the meal because her kids didn't like them.
As for the origin of these mushrooms, according to Patterson's statement some of them had been button mushrooms bought from a supermarket while the others had been dried mushrooms bought at an Asian grocery store three months before the meal.
She said that the rehydrated mushrooms had been mixed with the ones she'd bought from the supermarket and cooked into the beef wellington.
The 48-year-old also told police that she'd also been to hospital in the aftermath of the meal, saying she fell ill on 31 July two days after the lunch.
In her statement she said she was taken to the local hospital in Leongatha before an ambulance took her to Melbourne, and that she received a 'liver protective drug'.
Patterson said she preserved the remaining leftovers from the meal and gave it to toxicologists for examination, she said she also told them where she bought the dried mushrooms and that the Department of Health later sent her photos of packs of mushrooms similar to those she described.
Her statement also contained her admitting that she'd lied to police about a food dehydrator, having previously claimed she threw it out 'a long time ago' before saying she actually threw it out after she'd been hospitalised.
Victoria Police offered no update on the investigation.
They said: "Beyond that, we are not commenting on specific details of the case or what actions police will undertake as part of the investigation.
"If there are any updates we are able to release publicly, we will certainly let everyone know."