TV producer accused of killing own sister in Studio City appears in court

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Jill Blackstone is accused of killing her sister in their Studio City home and making it look like suicide. (KABC)

A former TV producer accused of killing her sister in Studio City in 2015 appeared in court Monday.

This is the first time Jill Blackstone has appeared in public since she was extradited back to Southern California from Maryland.

Authorities say the 55 year old former television producer drugged her younger sister Wendy Blackstone -- who was deaf and partially blind-- placed her in the garage of their Studio City home, along with their three dogs, and set a fire in the garage, staging the scene to look like an accident or suicide.

Blackstone's attorney says his client was arrested two days after her sister's body was found, but the case against her was dismissed by the district attorney.

Attorney Daniel G. Davis contends it would have been physically impossible for his client, a small woman, to drag her allegedly unconscious sister to the garage. He says Wendy Blackstone died from accidental carbon monoxide poisoning while barbecuing food in the garage for the two of them.

A coroner's report concluded the 49-year-old Wendy Blackstone died from inhalation of combustion and a sedative.

Investigators believe a suicide note found at the scene was actually written by Jill Blackstone.

She's now charged with one felony count of murder and three felony counts of cruelty to an animal.

Bail was set at more than $2 million. Blackstone is expected back in court on Thursday to enter her plea.
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