WOODLAND PARK, Colo — The Woodland Park Police was asked to solve one of the most significant missing person cases in southern Colorado history.
What happened to Kelsey Berreth? Within a year, justice was served.
“It was an immense investigation crossing state lines,” District Attorney Dan May said. “Miles De Young with the Woodland Park Police Department quickly recognized how huge this case was and reached out for other agencies to help.”
Many people praised the quick thinking of the Woodland Park Police, saying it was key to catching Berreth’s killer, Patrick Frazee.
More than 40 agencies from across the nation helped in this investigation.
“I have no ego when it comes to asking for help, I don’t have the resources at this agency, we have a lot of good things going for us but I can’t handle a case that’s this cold of this magnitude with no evidence of a body or crime scene when we initially took it on,” De Young said.
De Young and his department worked long hours to make sure the Berreht family got the closure it deserved.
“I can’t imagine what’s going through their minds, nothing can replace their daughter, but having a small measure of justice brought forward is a good step,” De Young said.
This case is putting a national spotlight on this small agency, which, at one point, received more than 500 tips, but it’s what they did not have that tipped them off.
“Some of the initial inconsistencies where Kelsey would have gone and Cheryl’s persistence when she said something wasn’t right,” De Young said.
De Young was there for every press conference and even sat through part of Frazee’s trial.
“The hardest part about this case was Kaylee and knowing she was with Patrick and knowing the testimony of Krystal Lee and what had occurred, and Kaylee was present when her mother died and hoping nothing bad would happen to Kaylee,” De Young said.
Friday will mark a year since Berreth was last seen.
While the verdict brings closure to the case, Berreth’s body has never been found.
“It’s coming up this Friday. I know it’ll be a tougher day for Cheryl and Darrel knowing there will be an empty spot at their Thanksgiving table,” De Young said.
He is focused on searching for Berreth’s body and helping the community cope with their loss.
“I want to thank everyone who’s been a part of this; it’s been a trying case for our community,” De Young said. “We are glad the jury found Frazee guilty.”
Frazee is being held at the Teller County Jail; the Department of Corrections will most likely take him following a custody hearing on December 5.