Parents charged with murder of couch-fused daughter released from jail

Sheila Fletcher (left) and Clay Fletcher (right), charged with second-degree murder in the death of their daughter Lacey Ellen Fletcher (bottom center), were released from jail on $300,000 bail.

Sheila Fletcher (left) and Clay Fletcher (right), charged with second-degree murder in the death of their daughter Lacey Ellen Fletcher (bottom center), were released from jail on $300,000 bail (Images: Department of the East Feliciana Parish Sheriff)

The parents of an autistic woman found melted on a sofa in her own excrement, who is facing murder charges in her death, have been released from jail on bail.

Sheila Fletcher and her husband Clay Fletcher were charged with second-degree murder in the death of their 36-year-old daughter Lacey Ellen Fletcher and arrested.

But Sheila was seen leaving the East Feliciana Parish jail in Louisiana on Tuesday night after posting $300,000 bail, the Daily Mail reported.

Clay spent another night in jail because his bail money was not made available on time. About 12 hours after his wife was released, Clay was also released Wednesday morning, according to the Daily Mail, which obtained photos.

After being released at 10:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sheila looked ahead and did not respond to questions from the news outlet when she met with a bail bondsman. Instead of an orange prison jumpsuit, Sheila wore a blue and white shirt and blue pants and her blonde hair looked disheveled.

The mother just stared when asked why her daughter, whose locked-in syndrome prevented muscle movement, stayed on the couch for a dozen years.

Meanwhile, Clay emerged at 10:25 a.m. Wednesday after his $300,000 bond was set. Sheila, dressed in a red shirt and blue pants, returned to the jail with the same bondsman to pick up her husband shortly before her release time.

Clay, dressed in black, also went ahead and walked quickly to a van parked near the jail reception. He also declined to comment.

The parents were taken into custody after a grand jury Monday in Clinton sided with District Attorney Sam D’Aquilla so they would be charged with second-degree murder rather than involuntary manslaughter.

Lacey was found dead at her parents’ home in the small town of Slaughter on Jan. 3, according to Coroner Dr. Ewell Dewitt Bickham III. She was found partially naked and sitting upright, submerged in a hole and surrounded by feces, urine and insects.

“You can’t let someone rot,” East Feliciana Sheriff Jeffery Travis said Monday.

If convicted, her parents face life in prison without parole.

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