Natalia Speaks: Is Kristine Barnett in jail?

Daisy Phillipson
Photo of Kristine Barnett and Michael Barnett in The Curious Case of Natalia Grace

Following the unexpected ending of Natalia Speaks, the Curious Case of Natalia Grace is set to get another follow-up documentary series – but until then, you might be wondering what happened to Natalia’s former adoptive mother, Kristine Barnett. Is she in jail? Here’s what we know.

Natalia Speaks is the follow-up documentary series to The Curious Case of Natalia Grace, which told the stranger-than-fiction tale of an orphan from the Ukraine who was passed from home-to-home before landing with Michael and Kristine Barnett in 2010. 

What followed was a source of much contention; while Michael claims in the original series that Natalia was older than she said and that she tried to hurt his wife and biological sons, Natalia accuses Kristine of physical and psychological abuse. 

In 2012, the Barnetts had Natalia’s legal age changed from eight to 22 before leaving her to live on her own in a flat in Indiana. Natalia Speaks sheds light on the situation while bringing Natalia and Michael face-to-face for the first time in years. But what about Kristine?

Natalia Speaks: Is Kristine Barnett in jail?

No, Kristine Barnett is not in jail right now. In March 2023, eight counts of neglect of a dependent against Kristine were dropped. According to the latest update, court documents state that she now resides in Florida.

Kristine and Michael got divorced in 2018, with their eldest biological son Jacob living with Michael and their two youngest sons living with Kristine. Although Michael initially claimed Natalia was a psychopath who tried to kill him and his family, he later turned on Kristine, telling Natalia that they had “the same monster.”

Although Kristine doesn’t appear or give statements to both of the documentary series, she did share a lengthy Facebook post on the matter amid the release of The Curious Case of Natalia Grace. 

In May 2023, she turned on Natalia’s new parents Antwon and Cynthia Mans, who took Natalia in after she was forced to live alone as a minor with a disability. “The Manns are not Natalia’s mom and dad and never were,” Kristine wrote in the now-deleted post. “When questioned in court they could not identify how many children they ‘have.’ They put her money under their control.”

Facebook post by Kristine Barnett

These allegations are in stark contrast to Natalia’s experience, who claims the Mans have given her a loving home and that Kristine was the abuser. It’s currently unclear whether Kristine will face any legal consequences or if the allegations will be investigated following the release of Natalia Speaks.

The Curious Case of Natalia Grace and Natalia Speaks are available to stream on Discovery Plus and Max, which you can sign up for here. You can read the Natalia Speaks ending explained here.

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About The Author

Daisy is a Senior TV and Movies Writer at Dexerto. She's a lover of all things macabre, whether that be horror, crime, psychological thrillers or all of the above. After graduating with a Masters in Magazine Journalism, she's gone on to write for Digital Spy, LADbible and Little White Lies. You can contact her on