The Curious Case of Natalia Grace: Adoptive dad Michael Barnett reveals how sociopath, 21, posing as girl, 6, threatened to 'stab and bury' his sons

The Curious Case of Natalia Grace: Adoptive dad Michael Barnett reveals how sociopath, 21, posing as girl, 6, threatened to 'stab and bury' his sons
Michael Barnett (L) claimed Natalia Grace (R) wanted to kill his sons (Investigation Discovery screenshots/YouTube)

LAFAYETTE, INDIANA: The adoptive father of a woman believed to be a con artist posing as a child has spoken up about her threats to kill his sons. Natalia Grace was adopted by a family from Lafayette, Indiana, assuming she was a six-year-old girl in April 2010. Grace is reportedly from Ukraine. 

Her adoptive parents, Michael Barnett and his wife, Kristine, said they later realized Grace was an adult dwarf posing as a child, and intended to harm them. The Barnetts eventually uprooted their family and left Grace behind, after updating her birth certificate. 


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In 2012, a judge agreed to Michael and Kristine's request to change Grace's birth year back 14 years, meaning she was actually in her 20s and was not a nine-year-old girl. The Barnetts took their three biological sons and fled to Canada after renting an apartment for Grace.


Who is Michael Barnett?

Michael has spoken out in a documentary titled 'The Curious Case of Natalia Grace.' It will be released in three parts on Investigation Discovery (ID) starting on May 29. Not much is known about Michael but he and Kristine filed for divorce in November 2014. The two had met while they were in college. Kristine abandoned her Amish background to marry Michael, The US Sun reported. 

Michael claimed in the docuseries that Grace is an "adult sociopath masquerading as a child." "We were all abused," he said. He added that Grace allegedly "threatened to stab my sons, drag their bodies outside and bury them underneath the deck."


"She tried to poison and kill my wife," Michael alleged. "One night, I opened my eyes and Natalia is standing at the foot of the bed with a knife in her hand." Back in 2019, Michael told Good Morning America that doctors said of Grace, "This person is a sociopath. This person is a con artist. You are all in danger."



The Barnetts were charged with neglect

Michael and Kristine were charged with neglect of a dependent in September 2019 for leaving Grace in July 2013 and fleeing the country. The parents, however, have maintained that they were the victims and not Grace.

"Natalia was a woman. She had periods. She had adult teeth. She never grew a single inch, which would happen even with a child with dwarfism," Kristine said. She added, "The doctors all confirmed she was suffering a severe psychological illness only diagnosed in adults. She was jumping out of moving cars. She was smearing blood on mirrors. She was doing things you could never imagine a little child doing."


Grace later appeared in a 2019 episode of Dr Phil and denied being an adult. Her new parents, too, claimed she was a "genuine loving girl" and not an "adult sociopath masquerading as a child."

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 Who is Michael Barnett? Adoptive dad says woman, 21, posing as girl, 6, threatened to kill his sons