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Former 'Jerry Springer' TV producer charged with murdering disabled sister

Former TV producer Jill Blackstone has been charged with the 2015 murder of her disabled sister. (Image source: WBZ-TV video screenshot)

Baltimore police arrested and charged former TV producer Jill Blackstone at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Maryland for the murder of her deaf and partially blind sister in 2015, according to authorities.

Blackstone is best known for her work on shows including "The Jerry Springer Show" and "Divorce Court."

What's the story?

Police have accused Jill Blackstone of drugging her sister Wendy Blackstone on March 14, 2015, and placing her body in the garage of their North Hollywood home, along with her three dogs, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.

Police said Wendy Blackstone, 49, and two of the three dogs were found dead in the enclosed garage that was filled with carbon monoxide. Near her feet were a Weber charcoal grill and a trash can with ash in it — both believed to be the source of the carbon monoxide, the report said. Police said Jill Blackstone had staged the scene to appear as an accident.

The Los Angeles Times reported that authorities found a suicide note in Wendy Blackstone's hand but that it was written by Jill Blackstone.

Investigators also found unsigned end-of-life orders and do not resuscitate orders at the scene.

An autopsy showed the woman died from inhalation of combustion and alprazolam, the generic name for the sedative Xanax.

After her sister's death, the former producer was taken into custody and released.

On March 18, the Los Angeles District Attorney filed murder and animal cruelty charges against Jill Blackstone, following a two-year investigation with the Los Angeles Fire Department. The court issued a warrant for her arrest.

Police tracked Jill Blackstone to a friend's home in Hoboken, New Jersey, and later learned that she had checked herself into the hospital in Baltimore for a medical condition.

Baltimore police arrested the woman Wednesday and she's now awaiting extradition to Los Angeles.

What was the possible motive?

Detectives believe Jill Blackstone's financial difficulties and frustrations in being forced to provide long-term care for her sister motivated the killing.

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