Kelly Rothwell

Kelly Rothwell
Much Loved Sister, Daughter, Friend

Friday, May 20, 2011

Missing Mail, Utah Job and Other Thoughts

There are many unanswered questions about Kelly Rothwell , the supposed job in Utah, the invites to her graduation and missing mail. I spoke again with Mrs. Rothwell today, Friday, May 20, 2011 and she gave me some more information, which you will read below. Leigh Clifton

In an interview I had with Mrs., Rothwell both last week and today, she told me that David had tried to push Kelly to interview in Utah. He was becoming increasingly aware that she was drifting from him; she had wanted to break up with him and wanted to start a new life.  He wanted to get her as far away from friends as family as possible. As far Mrs. Rothwell knew Perry had tried to convince Kelly to interview for a Human Resources job.

 Mrs. Rothwell said there WERE tickets purchased to Utah for the following weekend AFTER Kelly went missing.
In addition, there is the question someone asked about the invites to the Cadet graduation on April 13, 2011. As to the invitations, Mrs. Rothwell was NOT specific about whether they were filled out, although she doesn't think they were. Kelly went missing mid March; the graduation wasn't until April 13th, a month away. Mrs. Rothwell thinks the invites were NOT addressed; perhaps not as it was almost a month away at that point. They were found in among her papers. 
When Mrs. Rothwell spoke to Academy Coordinator Joe Smith, who knew Kelly well, he had told her that Kelly had mentioned that she had some people she wanted to invite to the graduation in April.  

 Kelly WAS going to interview with both/either Pinellas Park or Largo PD. I wrote the article about it. That info came straight from Police Academy Director John Dressback, in an interview I did with him on or about March 18th. In it he stated that Kelly was a leader among her fellow cadets and that he had recommended her to both departments. He was certain at that time she would have been hired by one of them.

  Mrs. Rothwell told me that at first David was OK with Kelly going to the Academy. But she had started at the Academy in November. It was after she began to see, via training videos, especially domestic violence issues that she herself was in a toxic relationship and realized that she had to get out of it. She tried several times to talk to him and then break up with him as well. He begged her to stay with him. It is my belief that as she grew stronger and began to hear her OWN voice, that he grew more and more panicked at the thought of losing her. He grew more obsessive and started checking up on her, texting her constantly and leaving her endless voice mails. I think he may have looked the job up in Utah himself and she may have said she would think about it in an effort to appease him in the short run. Mrs. Rothwell said Kelly DID have a phone interview and that the resort liked her so much they invited her out for a face-to face interview. But with Kelly's vast experience and wonderful personality it would make sense that ANY resort would want to hire her.Mrs. Rothwell said there WERE tickets purchased to Utah for the following weekend AFTER Kelly went missing.

 It is Mrs. Rothwell's thought that Kelly only did this to appease him and that she had no intention of taking the job OR going to the interview the following week because she was going to break up with him before the interview ever took place.  Could he have "planned” it for her? Maybe. Could it have been a diversion for when she went missing? Possibly. THAT of course would mean that if Perry DID murder her, it was a PREMEDITATED act of violence. It shows he had a plan. It shows he started to create a scenario of plausible deniability. She had been actively seeking a place to move to so she COULD leave him; it appears that was partly the holdup to her leaving him earlier. If he knew this somehow, then he would have tried to circumvent that outcome. Remember, he was obsessed and a control freak. Her leaving would have meant he had lost control of the situation. I’m sure to someone like him that was unthinkable. Again, I get this from several different interviews with friends, colleagues and family members. Some of it we will never know. Only one person knows the whole truth and he isn't talking.

One other issue is troubling to Mrs. Rothwell. When she came down to Florida the week after Kelly went missing, she had stopped at the Post Office to transfer Kelly's mail to be sent to the Rothwell home in Maryland. For almost two weeks after that, Mrs. Rothwell continued to receive a lot of Kelly's mail. Then is stopped. She STILL received junk mail and a bill from Allstate for Kelly's car insurance, but credit card and bank statements were missing. Mrs. Rothwell thinks that is very strange and wonders where that mail is. When she was here last week, she checked in with the Post Office again, who assured her that everything was as it should be on their end. They still had the forwarding address notice for the mail to be sent to Maryland. So where is the other mail? Where are the bank statements? Did Kelly have credit cards? If so, where are those statements? Was there an IRS refund check due to Kelly? If so, where is it?

While Perry is under investigation, the money he receives from his Work Comp claim will be suspended; he will not receive it. He MAY still be receiving his Social Security Disability Claim money, as they probably have either not been notified yet of his status OR they are still slow in processing the information. COULD Perry have called the credit card companies and told them to send Kelly's mail up to Elmira, as well as her bank statements? COULD he have convinced her to have a joint back account or joint credit cards and that is what he is using to live on? I do know that some credit cards offer a life insurance policy; usually $25,000 with the premiums rolled into the monthly payments.  Did he have himself named as such?  Would he risk stealing Kelly's mail? 
There are confirmed reports that Perry's daughter HAD been going to the Post Office every day to pick up his mail. For some reason, these visits have stopped. No one knows why.

There are so many small details to this case; details that when put together might complete a complex and disturbing puzzle that was Kelly's relationship to David Perry. Answering some of these questions may be a key to unlocking some of the answers to her disappearance. EVERY bit of information, no matter HOW small may be relevant.

Only time will tell.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

A Mother's Pain, A Daughter Lost...

The boxes of Kelly’s things still sit in the back room; she tried to open them and got through two before she broke down and had to walk away. The car was still being held as evidence when Nancy came to Florida last week. It was time, she said. It was time to get up, put one foot in front of the other, to keep walking and breathing and eating, when every fiber of her being told her to crawl back into bed and wait for the nightmare to be over. It was time to realize that the nightmare was real, the pain so intense it physically hurt. It was time to wake up and fight.
For Nancy Rothwell, this kind of thing is not easy for her. She is a kind and quiet woman, petite and blue eyed, shy and unassuming. She has a serene smile but her eyes are intense and flash when she thinks about her daughter Kelly and what might have happened to her.

“When I met Dave Perry, Kelly had brought him home to Nottingham. I knew that he treated her to nice trips and nice things. I could tell that money was no object for him when it came to her.  They certainly didn’t live poorly. But I could also see that he was the controlling type. It worried me, but Kelly was always such a private person and I think she really was in love with him.”

Nancy said she always supported Kelly in the things she did.

“She was always like a free spirit, she loved life and she danced through it. She turned a love of crystals and rocks into a Geology degree from Essex Community College. She was always collecting rocks on hikes she would go on. She has several of the large geodes; those large rocks, cut in half that have the crystals growing right inside them. She said they made her feel connected to the Earth. She loved the mountains and nature.”

Kelly moved out to Colorado with her boyfriend Sean and she was in heaven there. She loved the beauty and wide open spaces. Even though her relationship with Sean faded, she still loved the open country and she stayed there for a while, eventually getting her Masters degree in Management. She met and married a man named Doug, but he seemed indifferent and distant. The marriage didn’t last.

Kelly moved to Florida and worked with the Hilton Hotel organization for several years. Then she met a man from New York named David Perry while he was on vacation. He swept her off her feet; he bought her flowers and presents. He moved into her condo less than a month later. He gave her the attention she hadn’t gotten with Doug. She liked it.
“I think he would cook for her and iron her clothes,” Nancy said. “She thought that was wonderful, that he paid such close attention to her.”
Nancy’s eyes narrow and a look of pain crosses her face. Could she have seen the signs?  
“All the time he was doing things for her, he was controlling her little by little. I don’t think she saw it at first. I think she thought it was wonderful to have a man do so many nice things for her. He kept the house clean, he cooked and did laundry. He laid out her clothes for work. They went out to dinner. She seemed happy with him.”

But underneath, something dark was brewing, coming to the surface. Kelly’s twin sisters Lauren and Lindsay both saw some darkness in Perry. They noticed he was quick to anger and seemed to have a real mean streak. But Kelly never told any family members about any trouble she might have been having with him; as Nancy said, Kelly was a very private person.
The week before she disappeared Nancy found out that Kelly had enrolled in the St. Petersburg Police Academy. By then Kelly was almost through with her training and was due to graduate the following month.
“That came as a total surprise to me,” Nancy says. “She had told Lauren about it on the phone. She sounded so excited about it. I wondered what he (Perry) thought about it but figured they had worked it out and that he was ok with it.”

Even though they didn’t speak all the time, Nancy and Kelly stayed connected via email.

“Every day I would email her something positive, a ‘thought for the day’, just to let her know I was thinking about her. She didn’t always respond, but I just thought that she was really busy. I think now that I think back on it, he probably checked her emails. I don’t think he told her when I wrote her…”
During that time, Kelly and Lauren had a short falling out and Nancy feels now that maybe Perry probably got in the way, telling Kelly to just stay away from her family and the drama.

But Lauren and Kelly found a common ground and seemed to be in a better place the week before Kelly went missing.

“I heard in the beginning, Dave thought the Police Academy was a good idea for Kelly, but that towards the end of the training he wanted her to quit. He tried to convince her to take a job in Utah, in Human Resources,” Nancy says. “They were actually scheduled to fly out there the week after she went missing. But Kelly wouldn’t have taken a job that far away from her friends and her family. I think it was his idea to get her away from all of us, so he could keep control over her.”

Nancy thinks that with the Police Academy, Kelly had finally found her voice.

“Kelly was always interested in domestic violence issues and I think she felt that she could really help in that area of police work. She was always a very peaceful person and I’m sure she would have been really good at it...”

Nancy’s voice trails off, the pain evident as she thinks of what might have been.

When Nancy arrived in Florida the week after Kelly went missing, she went to the condo to clear out Kelly’s belongings when it became increasingly clear that Kelly wasn’t coming back.

“I picked up her clothes and books. I looked around the condo. It was just too neat, the kitchen too perfect. The towels in the linen closet were blue and white; they were lined up by color and folded perfectly. I looked inside the kitchen cabinets and my heart just sank. They were lined up everything so neatly, cans lined up all together, boxed things together, it was all too perfect. That’s when it hit me that that this man was such a control freak that he probably hurt my daughter, because she was becoming her own person. She was moving away from him and towards something good for her. It was very hard for me to see that and realize that Kelly had to live with this.”

As Nancy gathered her missing daughter’s belongings she noticed something... Sitting there on a table were the invitations to the Police Academy graduation, a month away.

“She had invitations all ready to send us,” Nancy says sadly.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Suspect Arrested in Murder of Security Officer

Arrested Suspect: Bradley Bolden, B/M, DOB 02/12/1991, of 6701 21st Street
South, St. Petersburg
Charge: First Degree Murder

At approximately 9:15 p.m. this evening, homicide detectives located Bradley
Bolden in the 1300 block of 66 Avenue South and took him into custody on a
charge of first degree murder in connection with the shooting death of
Security Officer Mathew Little at the Mariner Point Apartments early yesterday
morning. Bolden did not offer any resistance and was taken into custody
without incident.

He was brought to police headquarters for further interview with
investigators. During that interview Bolden admitted committing the murder and
stated he was motivated by his dislike for security personnel and law
enforcement in general.

Earlier in the day, detectives had received several tips indicating that
Bolden had committed the murder. He was subsequently identified by a witness
who had seen him fleeing the apartment complex immediately after the shooting
carrying two handguns.

Detectives are attempting to locate the murder weapon and Officer Little's
handgun at this time, based on information provided by Bolden.

Officer Little's family have been notified of the arrest.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Nancy Rothwell Grateful to CUE Center Searchers

In an interview with Nancy Rothwell, Kelly Rothwell's mother, she spoke with such heartfelt gratitude to the CUE Center for Missing Persons and in particular Monica Caison and her crew of volunteers.
"I would like to say thank you from the bottom of my heart," Nancy said of the volunteers, "for all of the long hours spent looking for Kelly. I am so grateful to all of you and I'm grateful to those people that brought their dogs. I know it must have been hard being here this long and I want you all to know my family can't possibly express how much this means to us."

Nancy went out the the Courtney Campbell Causeway Saturday night, after sunset, to see the place where Monica and her crew had spent the last three days looking for her daughter. Lit only by the street lamp overhead, she walked along the concrete bulkhead and stared into the  rocks and the water below. She stood quietly by a tree that had been of particular interest during the search, looking for anything that might be a clue to her daughter's whereabouts.It was difficult but necessary. She needed to see the place. But even the objects that had washed ashore in the days before, a pink sandal, chards of broken pottery and some yellow gauze material were gone, either taken or washed away with the tide. There were only rocks and the small waves lapping against a rough shoreline, the traffic going by and the wind as it whipped across the water.

She lit a candle that had been brought along, the wind threatening to extinguish it at every turn. Three times she tried to light it, but the wind was persistent. But she found a spot at the base of the tree, where the candle nestled perfectly; protected from the elements... and a candle was lit for Kelly in that remote spot at the water's edge. A spot where maybe her daughter had been... The clouds moved over and beyond a half moon, the light shining on the water like glistening diamonds in the dark.

She turned to go..the still-lit candle a testament to love and faith and truth. For a fraction of a second, she felt some peace and turned to go, leaving the candle's flame dancing and alive.

But where was Kelly, where was her life, her dance? Who took the life and love of a beautiful daughter?

Nancy Rothwell can only hope for justice... it is the hope of everyone, even those who never knew Kelly, that she gets it.


David Perry mug shot