The cousin of a young woman in prison for killing her mother–after years of being made to believe she was ill –has spoken out, claiming Gypsy Rose Blancharde’s extended family knew that she didn’t really need to be in a wheelchair.
Bobby Pitre, who recently appeared in the HBO documentary Mommy Dead and Dearest, was even more candid in an interview with Crimefeed Daily this week.
In June of 2015, after years of suffering due to her mother’s Munchausen-by-proxy syndrome, Gypsy convinced her boyfriend to stab Dee Dee Blancharde to death. Two days later, she posted a Facebook update that read, “The bitch is dead!,” shocking the many people who knew her as a sweet, sickly, helpless girl much younger than her actual age of 23 at the time of her mother’s murder.
Few people interviewed for Mommy Dead and Dearest admitted they had questions and concerns about Gypsy’s litany of conditions: One medical doctor said he briefly tried to raise the alarm the Dee Dee was hurting her daughter before easily giving up. Even Gypsy’s father, Rod, who stayed in semi-regular contact with Gypsy and her mother, and sent monthly child support checks, said he believed his daughter did need a wheelchair and did suffer from the ailments her mother said she did.
Because Dee Dee and Gypsy continued to move further away from Dee Dee’s Louisiana birthplace, her family did not realize the extent of the deception, and how much Dee Dee was benefiting from charity gifts — like trips to Disneyland and free airfare for medical treatments; treatments Gypsy didn’t need.
In the HBO documentary, Pitre made no secret of the fact that he thought his aunt Dee Dee was dangerously disturbed, calling her a “real weird girl” and speculating that she suffered from a serious psychiatric disorder.
And in the latest interview, Pitre suggests that family knew more than they might have admitted about what was really going on between Dee Dee and Gypsy.
Asked by Crimefeed if his family suspected Gypsy wasn’t as sick as Dee Dee said she was, Pitre said the family knew she could walk on his own, and that his father — Dee Dee’s brother — tried to bring it up:
My dad basically called Dee Dee out on the way she was keeping Gypsy down in a wheelchair. That was just at the beginning of the situation, and pretty much from there on she just left and kept on moving farther away from anybody.
Pitre went on:
We all (knew she could walk.). We’d play; we’d all hang out. I was a lot older than they were, she was the same age as my younger siblings and my younger cousins so they all played together. They jumped around, played around like it was no big deal. When Dee Dee would see Gypsy she would tell her that her legs are going to give her trouble or whatever. She would tell us that Gypsy’s legs were going to collapse and she had to go soak them in the tub.
Pitre said he would sometimes talk to Gypsy’s stepmother Kristy about it, saying, “I don’t think nothing’s wrong with that kid. She’s just got a bad mom.”
It’s unclear why no one in Gypsy’s extended family tried harder to address the situation, outside of the fact the Dee Dee made it very hard for the family to keep track of her daughter.
Pitre said that Dee Dee used her daughter’s purported medical conditions as an excuse to keep her away from family. For example, she could never spend the night at her father’s house because she needed the medical equipment and care only Dee Dee could provide.
Pitre also said that he wishes Dee Dee was still alive — but not because he isn’t glad she is dead.
“I wish that Dee Dee would come back to life right now, so I could kill that b**ch as slow as possible.”
Gypsy Rose Blanchard is serving a ten-year-prison sentence after pleading guilty to second-degree murder. She is due for release in 2025.
Feature photo: HBO