Duchesne County Woman Charged With Murder of 2-Year-Old Foster Son

A Duchesne County woman has been charged with the August murder of a 2-year-old foster son in her care. Court records show that on November 7th, 41-year-old Lisa Jo Vanderlinden was charged in 8th District Court with 1st Degree Felony Aggravated Murder. According to investigators, the 2-year-old victim lived with and was in the primary care of Vanderlinden since April 2017. Vanderlinden found the boy to be “difficult and challenging, and while she wanted to keep and adopt [his one-year-old] sister, she did not want to adopt him.”  Vanderlinden told investigators that on the evening of August 4th, 2018, she was “mad and frustrated” with the boy and she removed him from the dinner table. Investigators say from that point forward, the boy was in her care. Others in the home told investigators that at some point in the evening, a loud bang was heard from the bathroom where Vanderlinden was caring for the boy. It was also noted that after that the boy wasn’t acting normal, wouldn’t walk, and began throwing up. On the morning of August 5th, the Duchesne County Sheriff’s Office was dispatched to the residence on a report of a deceased 2-year-old boy. The medical examiner found the boy to have numerous bruises and abrasions to his entire body as well as significant internal injuries that resulted in death. Vanderlinden admitted to investigators that she had sole care of the boy during the hours following dinner. Forensic testing showed that vomit on the boy’s clothing contained his blood. “Despite her training as a foster parent and nurse,” states the Probable Cause statement, “the defendant was completely indifferent to [the boy’s] well being and did not seek medical attention for the boy.” Vanderlinden has been a foster parent for several years and has previously adopted foster children. She is also a Licensed Practical Nurse who has provided services to the Children’s Justice Center. As a result of the boy’s death, Vanderlinden’s foster and natural children were removed by DCFS. It was also noted there have been past allegations of abuse against Vanderlinden.


Kristin Baldwin

Kristin never planned to work in news radio but has thoroughly enjoyed being part of the news team at KVEL. Her love of literature and writing developed in high school which led her to study English Literature and Technical Writing at BYU. She received her BA in English from BYU in 2005 and studied at UVU in Orem for 2 semesters to become a Certified Technical Writer in 2006. Two months after completion she began her dream job of being a stay-at-home mom.  As mother of 2 energetic kids, she began writing from home for the KVEL news team in 2011 and considers it the perfect fit as a full time mom and part time writer.