WOODLAND PARK, Colo. (CBS4) – Patrick Frazee, who is accused of murdering his fiancée Kelsey Berreth, has filed a motion to limit the release of information about the case before it goes to trial. His attorneys cite “massive pre-indictment and pretrial negative publicity.” Prosecutors are fighting to have the motion denied without a hearing.
The order filed by the public defender’s office would “limit the dissemination of information by the attorneys, their agents, employees and all law enforcement investigators, personnel and employees, and all court personnel concerning this case.”
“Because of the massive pre-indictment and pretrial negative publicity, this Order is necessary to help preserve and protect, to any extent that it might be possible at this stage of the proceedings, Mr. Frazee’s right to a trial by jury and right to a trial by a fair and impartial jury,” the motion states.
The response filed by prosecutors disputed claims made by the defense.
“Contrary to the Defendant’s motion, there has not been ‘massive pre-indictment and pretrial negative publicity’ such that it would affect the Defendant’s right to a fair trial,” Elizabeth Reed, Lead Deputy District Attorney, stated. “At this stage of the case, the People do not believe a hearing on this motion is warranted.”
Frazee now faces first-degree murder charges. Police have not found Berreth’s body but they have said they believe she is dead.
“While we haven’t found Kelsey at this time, information has been developed that is helping to narrow down our search,” Woodland Park Police Chief Miles De Young said.
Berreth was last seen was on Thanksgiving Day at Safeway when she handed over her toddler to Frazee, who is the child’s father. Berreth was reported missing Dec. 2 by her mother.
The child is now in protective custody. De Young said the 1-year-old girl will be placed with family members soon.
Frazee was arrested at his home in Florissant just after daybreak on Friday and booked into the Teller County Jail. Officials said they were able to get the arrest warrant based on the interviews they conducted with Frazee.
De Young also said investigators “recovered a number of items that make us suspicious that the crime did occur at Kelsey’s residence.”
The FBI spent all day at Berreth’s townhome on Thursday, and for the first time began taking large items out of the house. On Thursday night investigators from multiple agencies were spotted carrying several pieces of evidence away. Neighbors in Woodland Park told CBS4’s partner KKTV in Colorado Springs that the search felt different on Thursday. Police also returned to the home on Friday.
At this point authorities aren’t saying whether there could be more people who might face charges.
Watch the complete Friday morning police news conference from Woodland Park below:
Court documents are currently sealed in the case. Formal charges are expected in approximately 10 days.
Frazee appeared in court via video conferencing on Friday and was advised of the charges against him. He is scheduled to appear in court on Dec. 31.