Dr. Phil: Brenda Heist Turned Herself In After Suicide Attempt

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Dr. Phil: Brenda Heist Lived Among The Homeless

Dr. Phil: Brenda Heist Turned Herself In After Suicide Attempt

Brenda Heist attempted suicide before she turned herself in. (OlegD / Shutterstock.com)

Down in Key West, there are a lot of people who live homeless. In the mangroves of the Keys and under bridges, these groups of vagabonds come together and form their own communities of outcasts. Given that Brenda Heist had never even met a homeless person before, it was strange that, in a two week span, she went from blissfully unaware of the existence of these communities to being a part of one. Throughout it all, she just kept telling herself, “they’re better off without me,” because in the wake of a financial crisis and an impending divorce, she did not believe she would be a fit mother for the two children she was to take custody of.

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Dr. Phil: Brenda Tried To Contact Family During Disappearance

Brenda Heist was an emotional wreck when she first got down, and she doesn’t think that she ever stopped being in such a distressing emotional state—her mind always wandering to thoughts of her children or the implications of what she had done.

She did try to contact a family member, her brother, once, several years into her adventure, but his phone did not accept the call that she made. She doesn’t know if she would even want to talk to him, just to hear his voice.

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Dr. Phil: Brenda Heist’s Husband Was Suspected Of Having Her Killed

What exactly did Brenda Heist think her family would think happened to her? Not that they thought she was dead (she was declared dead in 2010), just that she had run away. As it turns out, her family had both buried her and had the father accused of hiring a hit man to have her killed. Brenda did not know that this happened. Hearing these things, Brenda wonders if she made the right decision, but after all these years, she didn’t want to run from her problems anymore.

Dr. Phil: Brenda Heist Turned Herself In After Suicide Attempt

After a suicide attempt that didn’t work, Brenda Hesit decided three days later to turn herself in. She walked into the Sheriff’s Station in Monroe County. She first turned herself in as Kelsey Smith, thinking there would be a warrant out for her arrest, but when that didn’t work, she pulled out her Pennsylvania identification and told the officer who she really was and that she had been missing for 11 years.

At first, the officer did not believe her, he told her she was dead. But when he called Detective Schofield, the Lititz County Detective assigned to her case in 2002, her story was confirmed.

Dr. Phil: Brenda Heist Was With A Man For Seven Years

Brenda Heist was not homeless for her entire tenure in Key West. She took odd jobs under the table, and eventually met a man with whom she stayed for seven years. The two eventually moved from Key West and tried to start a business together, but the pills and alcohol the man was addicted to got in the way, so Brenda left.

Brenda thought she was in love with this man, but the alcohol and pills got in the way of that too, and, much like her first relationship, she picked up in the middle of the night and left.

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