Missouri Teacher Caught on Camera Poisoning Husband's Smoothies with Toxic Plant that 'Slows Down the Heart'

Sarah Scheffer
Sarah Scheffer (left) and an image of the lily of the valley plant. Twitter

A high school teacher in Missouri is charged with attempted murder, with authorities alleging she poisoned her husband.

Sarah Scheffer, 37, was allegedly caught putting a root of a plant known as lily of the valley into her husband's smoothie after he set up a hidden camera in the kitchen, according to a probable cause statement filed by the Jefferson City Police Department.

Victim Started Experiencing Nausea, Blurred Vision, Fatigue Among Other Symptoms After Drinking the Smoothie

The alleged victim became suspicious when he started experiencing "extreme fatigue, confusion, blurred vision, severe cotton mouth and nausea" after eating or drinking on eight different occasions, according to the probable cause statement.

On Jan. 1, police say Scheffer brought the alleged victim a drink, which had a bitter taste, and he confronted her about it. In response, she allegedly told the man she had urinated in the beverage, before saying she put an industrial strength adhesive into it, according to the statement. Scheffer later denied putting anything in the drink, police say.

Victim Then Installed a Surveillance Camera in the Kitchen, Caught Her in the Act

After that incident, police say the alleged victim installed the surveillance camera in the kitchen.

On Tuesday morning, the alleged victim found a bowl containing a root from a bag labeled "lily of the field" on a table in Scheffer's home work area, the statement says. That same morning, police allege that the camera captured Scheffer pouring the bowl's contents into a blender, which the man says was for a smoothie she prepared for him, according to the statement.

Police claim Scheffer admitted that she blended lily of the valley into her husband's smoothie, despite knowing it could potentially kill him, allegedly saying she intended to harm him.

'Lily of the Valley' Known to Slow Down the Heart

Lily of the valley contains cardiac glycosides, which slows down the heart and can prove to be fatal for the one consuming its contents.

Scheffer is an art and design teacher at Calvary Lutheran High School in Jefferson City, according to the school's website. She has been placed on leave, the school said in a reported statement.

"This afternoon, Calvary Lutheran High School was notified by JCPD of a criminal matter pertaining to an employee," the school's executive director said in a statement reported by KMIZ. "The alleged conduct was outside of the employee's association with the school and did not involve a student or any other school personnel. As a Christian community, Calvary Lutheran High School believes in protecting the well-being of all individuals who are part of our programs and we seek to respond in a caring and sensitive manner to everyone in our school community."

Scheffer is charged with first-degree attempted murder and armed criminal action, court records indicate. No hearings have been scheduled as of Thursday, and records do not indicate if she has entered a plea or retained an attorney.