Kelsey Berreth, a 29-year-old mother and flight instructor, has been missing since Thanksgiving Day, but, tragically, authorities no longer believe she is alive.
There is a Facebook page devoted to finding Kelsey Berreth. The young mother’s disappearance raised great concern because her cell phone pinged 700 miles away from where she was last seen, according to Fox News. In addition, her belongings were left behind, and her family says it’s not like Kelsey to disappear, especially because she has a very young daughter. Authorities have now released Frazee’s booking photo:
“Today we arrested Patrick Frazee on charges of first-degree murder,” the police chief said, adding that Frazee was taken into custody on the morning of December 21. He is being held at the Teller County Jail. Kelsey’s daughter is in protective custody and will be united with Kelsey’s family, according to the police chief. He said her family is not providing interviews. Authorities said that Frazee was arrested on suspicion of first-degree murder and solicitation of murder. They did not explain the solicitation charge but indicated it requires evidence that the person worked with another to commit a crime. Only Frazee is under arrest at this time, though.
The police chief called the investigation “methodical and time-consuming.” Authorities have still not found Kelsey but information “has been developed to narrow down our search…sadly, we don’t believe Kelsey is still alive,” the police chief revealed. He said authorities not think she was killed in her residence.
On December 21, 2018, Kelsey’s fiance Patrick Frazee, a farrier in Colorado, was arrested after searches of his residence, according to KOAA-TV.
Authorities previously stopped short of saying they think foul play is involved.
“If she’s out there and doesn’t want to be contacted, just let us know that she’s safe and we’ll let her family know,” said Cmdr. Chris Adams of the Woodland Park Police Department to CBS News early on in the case.
“We are treating Kelsey’s disappearance as a missing person’s case at this time. We have not identified anyone as a suspect,” said Police Chief Miles De Young in a press conference on December 10, 2018. However, that appears to have changed in the 48 hours before Frazee’s arrest, according to Fox News, which reports that authorities no longer believe Kelsey is alive.
Cheryl Berreth, Kelsey’s mother, was at an earlier press conference. “She’s not the kind that runs off. This is completely out of character…Kelsey is reliable, considerate and honest,” she said. “…Like I said, she doesn’t run off and someone knows where she is at. Kelsey, we just want you home…and we won’t quit looking.”
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Kelsey Was Seen at a Colorado Grocery Store & Then Vanished
The police chief promised to continue authorities’ “relentless pursuit” of justice for Kelsey Berreth.
He confirmed that multiple searches were conducted of Kelsey’s home. As for the circumstances surrounding Kelsey’s murder, authorities did not provide many details. In fact, the prosecutor said the affidavits in the case may be sealed for 30 days before there are “a lot of investigative leads that still need to be done.”
Kelsey was last spotted at a Safeway supermarket near her Colorado home, Fox News reports. When her mother reported her missing on December 2, no sign of Kelsey Berreth could be found. Police released surveillance video from the grocery store (see above.)
Kelsey was shopping with her daughter at the Safeway, the police chief said in a news conference. She then exchanged her daughter with her fiancee that day, according to the chief.
According to a missing person’s poster from the Woodland Park Police, the community where Kelsey lived, Kelsey Berreth was last seen on November 22, 2018 in the area of her residence, 200 block of E. Lake Avenue in Woodland Park, Colorado. She has family in both Idaho and Washington, the missing person’s poster says. People with information are urged to call the Woodland Park Police Department at 719-687-9262.
Police said that she was last seen wearing a “white shirt, grey sweater, blue pants (possibly blue jeans), brown purse and white shoes.” Police said they are looking for information to “help us reunite Kelsey with her daughter.” There were cold cinnamon rolls in Kelsey’s residence when authorities searched it.
2. Kelsey Berreth Is the Mother of a Toddler & Had a Fiance
Kelsey’s daughter is only 1-years-old. Her daughter is safe, according to the Facebook page devoted to finding her.
The post with the above photo reads, “Kelsey’s family desperately needs her back. Please call Woodland Park Police Dept. @ 719-687-9262 with any information. Someone must have seen or spoken with her Thanksgiving Day or since. This photo was taken 1 year ago.”
The police chief said that Kelsey’s fiancee is named Patrick Frazee, According to KDVR, “He told police the last text he received from her phone was on November 25th. Police said Kelsey’s mother reported her missing on December 2nd.”
The child is with the father, Patrick, police said in the previous news conference, and Frazee said they exchanged the child on November 22 and he said that was the last time he saw Kelsey. A reporter asked why Patrick Frazee was not at the press conference since he was invited, and the police chief said, “You have to ask him,” and said he was being cooperative. He said the pair did not live together but were engaged.
Officers were able to contact her place of employment at Doss Aviation down in Pueblo, Colorado. Her employer said they had received a text from Kelsey’s phone on November 25, 2018 saying that Kelsey would not be coming in to work for the next week. Officers went to her residence on December 2. “She was not inside her residence,” said the chief.
He said that Cheryl Berreth, Kelsey’s mom, reached out to Kelsey’s fiancé, Patrick Frazee, and he said he hadn’t heard from Kelsey since November 25 when she texted him. Patrick told officers he hadn’t seen her since Thanksgiving, when they exchanged their daughter, said Chief De Young. The 1-year-old girl is currently with her father, Patrick, said the chief, who added that authorities had reviewed video from the local Safeway grocery store from November 22, and it showed her shopping with her daughter. That’s the last time Kelsey was seen.
“At this point he is the father of Kelsey’s daughter and we’re going to leave it at that. This is a missing persons case,” Chief De Young said at a news conference before the arrest.
A reporter for KRDO-TV later approached Frazee and asked him questions. You can see that video here:
“Patrick, people are wondering why you haven’t spoken out about your fiancée,” the reporter said through the closed window of Frazee’s car, imploring Frazee to speak to him. Frazee didn’t respond, and drove off. However, his lawyer later released a statement on the case.
On December 12, Frazee issued a statement through his attorneys, the Law Officer of Jeremy Lowe, saying that he did not attend the press conference because he only learned about it one hour before it took place. He said if he had more advance notice, he would have participated. Frazee also said through his attorneys that he is cooperating with the police investigation and “hopes and pray for Ms. Berreth’s return.”
The comment thread under the Facebook photo of Frazee, Berreth, and their daughter contains this message, “This is a message from Shannon Hicks, I am one of the administrators/moderators for this page. I would like to respectfully remind everyone that this is an ongoing investigation and that we need to be respectful to all concerned. At some point the truth will be released. Until then, I would suggest that we keep character defining suggestions and/or implications to ourselves. If you have information I would ask that you report it to the police immediately or message the this page privately.”
People have inquired whether Kelsey had a husband. The Facebook page further explained, “Thank you for your Concern…Kelsey owns a home and lives in Woodland. She is an Aviation Instructor in Pueblo. The ‘man’ in the photo is the little girl’s father and Kelsey’s fiance.”
Her cousin, JoDee Garretson, told KEPR-TV, “They’re a very close-knit family. That’s why I don’t believe she’d just…She’s got to see people are looking for her. She wouldn’t put them through that.”
She added, “She’s such a good person, a loving person. She’s grounded and responsible. She has a one year old child, she wouldn’t just leave her.”
3. Kelsey Berreth Is a Pilot Who Likes Hiking
The Missing Mother: Kelsey Berreth Facebook page, which is devoted to finding her, provides additional details about the missing woman.
“Missing Since Nov. 22nd, 2018 – She is a mother, daughter, sister, granddaughter and friend…” the page reads. “She is also a Pilot and instructs in Pueblo, CO., loves hiking, running and bicycling.” Kelsey was off work on the 22nd, and then she “got a hold of her employer and advised she was going to be off,” the police chief said.
On December 6, 2018, the page added, “Kelsey is a pilot. Although it would be out of character for her to not contact anyone before making a cross-country trip we can’t exclude the possibility. Kelsey has ties to the Pacific Northwest as well as Kansas. She does not own a plane nor do we know of any local friends that she would borrow one from. I don’t believe she has ever made a flight without filing a flight plan. We do realize that it is possible to rent a plane, but I believe someone would be missing it by now. Non-the-less we have to consider every possibility.”
Kelsey’s Facebook page doesn’t have much that is publicly visible, but it does contain photos and artwork of small planes, and a cover photo of palm trees.
The following details were also provided by the page devoted to finding the missing woman:
“Age – 29 yrs., Height – 5’-3”, Wt. 110lbs.
Current Residence – Woodland Park, CO
Phone was last Pinged in – Gooding, Idaho
She has family in – Central Washington, Northeast Washington and Colorado
She was last seen wearing a white shirt, gray sweater, blue jeans/dark blue pants, white shoes and carrying a brown purse.
Please Report any information you might have to the Woodland Park, CO Police Dept. – 719.687.9262.”
4. Kelsey’s Brother Says She Didn’t Pack But Her Purse Is Missing
Kelsey’s brother, Clint Berreth, posted on Facebook, “After arriving at Kelsey’s house last night and combing through her things, we know 1 thing is certain. Kelsey did not pack to go anywhere. All luggage is here. Her purse is all that seems to have gone.” Her cars are not missing, CBS News reports.
Berreth also wrote, “There are several prayer vigils happening tonight at 7:00 pacific time. Please take a moment at 7:00 tonight no matter where you are to say a prayer for Kelsey Berreth especially, but also the rest of our family as we continue this search. #helpfindkelseyberreth.”
Clint has been sharing repeated photos and posts of his missing sister on Facebook. “Kelsey we love you and we’re looking for you!!!! #helpfindkelseyberreth,” he wrote with one. “I feel like we’re in the middle of the furnace, Lord help us through it. ??” he wrote with another.
The Sandpoint Seventh-day Adventist Church is among those offering prayers for the safe return of Kelsey Berreth. One recent post reads:
“Dear Church Family,
There is no breaking news about the Berreth’s daughter, Kelsey at this time. But I will pass on to you the strength and comfort that our prayer vigil and other prayer initiatives on behalf of Kelsey and the family have been to Cheryl and Darrell. They wanted me to pass that on to you, thank you very much for your prayers!
Tomorrow we will have another opportunity to join our prayers as a church family. We invite you to join your church family immediately following the fellowship meal tomorrow for an hour of prayer. We will sing hymns, pray and share from God’s comforting and hopeful Word. Everyone is invited and encouraged to attend!
5. Kelsey’s Phone Pinged in Idaho, Reports Say
According to Fox News, Kelsey’s phone “reportedly pinged more than 700 miles away in Idaho days after she vanished.”
The Kelsey Facebook page further noted, “Authorities reported recently that her cell phone was pinged to Gooding, Idaho, which is about 35 miles north of Twin Falls, and Idaho State Police are now involved in investigating her disappearance.” CBS News reported that Berreth has family near that location.
A spokesman for the Idaho State Police told East Idaho News that they had received a bulletin “that Berreth could possibly be in the state but that is the extent of their investigation.”
However, Woodland Park police Commander Chris Adams told KEPR-TV: “It could just be a false ping, or it could be the actual last location for the activity of that phone.” To Good Morning America, he said, “It makes us wonder what she’s doing up there or what the phone is, potentially, because she may not be there.”