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Thread: CA - Katie Wilkins found dead in the garage of her parents' home

  1. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by Essense View Post
    The matter of fact approach means i'm looking for answers and honest takes and help/support. When I was in the early moments horror (first 12 hours) I heard sounds come out of me I hope I never do again.

    A few folks noted my fathers matter of fact demeanor to speaking about Katie on TV. Yes, I can see how that may come across oddly devoid of expected emotion and I have heard this from other folks as well. The TV interviews are a small and distant look into what our family has gone through since Katie's death. Public vs private response to this is important to consider when gauging demeanor.

    I'm Steve Wilkins, Katie's brother. I found Katie dead in my parent’s garage during the afternoon/evening of April 28th. She died sometime between the late evening hours of April 27th and the morning hours of April 28th.

    At this time I believe Katie died of a heroin overdose, the investigation revealed strong indications of this. Included in the toxicology report is testing for date rape drug, specifically rohypnol. I believe the heroin or heroin/rup was administered by another person. The investigation revealed strong indications that the injection was not self administered.

    Somone was there at the home with her before she died; her car keys are missing from the home, her car is missing from the home, if OD then drug paraphernalia was taken from the home. Investigation revealed the house was clean of drugs/drug paraphernalia. Her car remains missing and no one has come forward with any information about it. No one has come forward about her whereabouts on the evening of April 27th.

    After successfully unlocking her cell phone, I looked at Katie’s phone log to check her txt messages for indications of her contacts and plans leading up to her death.

    Chris Benton, son of Pepperdine University President Andy Benton, is the last known person to have been with Katie Wilkins before her death. I have text messages showing a planned meeting between Katie Wilkins and Chris Benton on April 27th at 8:30PM. At 8:33PM video surveillance from the Malibu Mc Donald’s restaurant shows Katie, in her 1998 BMW Silver Z3, pulling into the McDonalds parking lot, Chris entering the car as a passenger, and just the two of them driving away. This is her last known whereabouts before she was found dead at our family home on April 28th.

    When Chris Benton was contacted for questioning about his involvement with Katie on the night of April the 27th an attorney was hired for him.

    I have indication that Chris Benton was entered into a drug treatment facility on April 28th. He has not been questioned; he has not made himself available for questioning.

    Here is Chris Benton's Pictures. 1st picture confirmed, 2nd unconfirmed. Ears do not appear to match to me.


    Steve, I am so sorry about what happened to your sister. I can't imagine the pain you are going through. I have prayed for your family several times and will continue to do so.

    I am glad you are so pro-active about getting to the truth. This stinks to high Heaven and Benton has answers. We will do whatever we can to help you in anyway we can. This is an awesome group of members!

    I think both pictures are the same person, Chris Benton. Those creepy eyes are the same.

    Welcome to Websleuths!
    Last edited by JBean; 05-08-2012 at 09:04 PM. Reason: removed picture from quoted post
    Say what you mean, mean what you say, but don't say it mean.
    We are all just trying to make sense of an unimaginable crime.

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  3. #77
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    Chris Benton

    Please take down the picture of Chris Benton, dressed in a blue base ball cap, eating shrimp and oysters. This is my son and his name is Chris Benton, but you have incorrectly identified him as being involved in the story about the death of a 25 year old Malibu women.
    You have the wrong Chris Benton. I don't know how this site checks their facts, but you all have made a big mistake. The story about this girl ran again last night on KCBS and showed the picture of my son as "the" Chris Benton. That's his name and that's his picture, but everything else is incorrect. Its a BIG mistake.
    Please respond.

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  5. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by BENTONS View Post
    Please take down the picture of Chris Benton, dressed in a blue base ball cap, eating shrimp and oysters. This is my son and his name is Chris Benton, but you have incorrectly identified him as being involved in the story about the death of a 25 year old Malibu women.
    You have the wrong Chris Benton.Please respond.
    Is the picture on top the same person?
    “Every day that they don’t find something is good for me.“ Billie Dunn

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  7. #79
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    Chris Benton

    N o !!

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  9. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by BENTONS View Post
    N o !!
    So are there TWO Chris Bentons then? Because the girls family seemed to think the person who climbed into her car was named Chris Benton. They saw the video from the McDonalds. And they looked at her cell records too. And found his number as the last one to call her.

    Is it another Chris Benton?
    “Every day that they don’t find something is good for me.“ Billie Dunn

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  11. #81
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    I haven't made much headway. I am not even sure what it is I should focus on. However, with that said, I found that 'yes', The President of Pepperdine and his wife do live on the Pepperdine Campus in a residence called Brock House. It is up on the hill near the American flag. I have no indication if the son still lives there or not. An older sister, apparently lives elsewhere.

    Here is an old bad picture of the view of the Pacific Ocean from the house. Pacific Coast Highway is at the foot of the hill, running across the picture. South is to the left, North is to the right.


    Credit: lmonteros, on August 23, 2009, said:
    The most spectacular view on the Pepperdine campus is from the President's house, nestled in the Santa Monica Mountains.


    Benton's sister as it turns out, is a lawyer. Some kind of personnel or worker's comp kind of attorney, I think. But, she does seem to have some connection with The Renaissance Malibu Foundation, which has an office in Agoura Hills, and their alcohol and drug 'treatment' center is in Malibu at 30765 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu, CA which is about 8.7 miles north of the Pepperdine Campus.

    The Malibu McDonald's is south of the campus, maybe about 3 miles. Not so far from Pepperdine. Could probably hitchhike, or grab a ride with a friend.

    I guess I am still trying to figure out where the car is.

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  13. #82
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    Gosh, I started my post an hour ago and took a call in the middle of it, so as I just finished and posted, I see the entries about the photo of the young man with the oysters not being 'the' c. benton. I will alert a moderator to ask that the photo be removed.

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  15. #83
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    Okay, so I sent an alert and hopefully, the photo will be removed asap.

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  17. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by BENTONS View Post
    Please take down the picture of Chris Benton, dressed in a blue base ball cap, eating shrimp and oysters. This is my son and his name is Chris Benton, but you have incorrectly identified him as being involved in the story about the death of a 25 year old Malibu women.
    You have the wrong Chris Benton. I don't know how this site checks their facts, but you all have made a big mistake. The story about this girl ran again last night on KCBS and showed the picture of my son as "the" Chris Benton. That's his name and that's his picture, but everything else is incorrect. Its a BIG mistake.
    Please respond.
    Please accept my sincere apologies. I feel horrible about this mistake. You are 100% correct that this was a BIG mistake on my part. I had indications these were the same person, I feel terrible that your son has been misidentified in the case involving the death of my sister. The news story that ran with his picture will be corrected tonight.

    I was notified that this picture was a big issue and I'm trying to get it taken down now.

    I will ensure it's taken down, I believe a mod has been notified. Beyond that you may send me a PM to contact me personally, your son if he wishes, I will do what I can to make it right. I say this realizing it is too late, and for that please forgive me.

    The edit button is not available after a post has been up a certain period of time. When I came here to resolve the mistake, the edit feature was not available, and a mod was required to take it down.
    Last edited by Essense; 05-08-2012 at 08:50 PM.

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  19. #85
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    I got the verification from three independent sources (majority of response here, and two other unrelated individuals) that the pictures were the same person before I granted its use in the news story. I am very sorry for this mistake.

    The Chris Benton who is the son of Andy Benton (President of Pepperdine University) is the last person to be seen with my sister, the remaining picture in this thread is his DMV photo.

    This is from a few years ago.
    Last edited by Essense; 05-08-2012 at 10:03 PM.

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  21. #86
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    I would have bet the DMV photo was the same person in the (now disputed) picture of the young man wearing a baseball cap & eating shellfish. What are the chances of different guys looking so much alike & having the same name?

    I hope to read tomorrow that progress is being made in the investigation & Chris Benton has been interviewed or has been scheduled to address the obvious questions. Steve, my continuing thoughts for you & your parents as you try to unravel the details of your sister's death.
    Last edited by noZme; 05-08-2012 at 11:41 PM.

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  23. #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by katydid23
    You do have a tough road ahead. Not only because of the ruling out of foul play. But also, as you obviously realize, Benton's father has a lot of political clout. Pepperdine is a major prestigious force locally, financially and in many other ways. I bet this kid has been protected for a long time.
    This is an ongoing concern for me.


    Quote Originally Posted by BaileyandBella
    Were you able to get into her computer and find any info that way?
    We did get into her computer, nothing compelling regarding the case or her death at this time on it. Lots of work related endeavors.

    Quote Originally Posted by mikesmommom
    I would email the writer from the link Lovejac found,and let him know the rest of what you know so far.He might be able to help keep your sisters story out in the news.
    Hard to keep up. Will do.


    Quote Originally Posted by terracotta
    I have a few questions, if that is okay. Did your family commission a private autopsy to be able to document that it was/could be foul play? A second opinion? It would seem that Malibu wants to keep it's record of no homicides and therefore that can taint results. They probably would like to close the case and just say OD. But you know differently as everyone does that looks at the facts of the situation.

    Private autopsy has not been commissioned at this time.

    Was there any other cameras between McDonalds and your parents home that could have captured a view of her car?

    I'm concerned at this time that tapes may have rolled over. Previously I checked with fire stations and fire camps. No street cameras that I was aware of, no one in neighborhood with camera that can capture the street activity.

    Also was the washer or dryer still in cycle? Meaning that the person with her had done some laundry or was "staging" things?

    Cycle was the term used describe the laundry being either in dryer or washer, but it was not active AFAIK when I entered house. I do not believe laundry related activity was related to a staging endeavor at this time.

    Was this person someone who she has been friends with for a long time? A new friend? Did she ever date him?

    They have spent time together before on multiple occasions. Chris was not a new friend. Dating and physical relation I do not know at this time.

    Had your sister had a drug issue in her past or was it a social thing?

    Drug problem in past yes. Social, I do not know. Katie was recovering/recovered/relapsed? addict. Katie aware prior to death of overdose/death concern of relapse due to my older sister working in treatment center and making clear (think tough love) the certain risk of reintroduction/relapse. Katie behavior indicated by close friends and family to be consistent with no involvement in heroin/cocaine (her previous drug issues) during the time, months-years, leading up to her death. Actual involvement during this period is unknown at this time.

    Anyway I have lots of questions, but I understand if you don't want to answer them. Thank you again for sharing, I can't imagine the pain that you are going through. I can imagine your sister is proud of you and thankful that you are giving her a voice.

    100%, i'm on your side here as well. Looking for answers. Thank you for support.
    My responses in bold for above quote.

    Quote Originally Posted by i.b.nora
    So, now I am wondering where this Chris Benton lives or lived. He wasn't driving his own car because he had apparently crashed it last year. Does he live with mommy and daddy? Do they live on the Pepperdine campus? I am going to look on a map but I am wondering how close the Malibu McDonald's is to Pepperdine, and I am wondering if there are any storage locker places in that area. I will look. Others who might be more familiar with the area than myself can certainly look too. I don't really 'get' that this Chris Benton is used to walking much.

    If the car hasn't turned up, it has to be in a storage locker, or someone's garage, imo.
    Txt message indicated Chris crashed his car as recently as the Friday he got into Katies car at the Mc Donalds. I believe Chris lived at home with his parents, this is unconfirmed but I am nearly certain of this.

    Car still missing, could be anywhere? Inclination is close to home.

    Quote Originally Posted by noZme
    I hope to read tomorrow that progress is being made in the investigation & Chris Benton has been interviewed or has been scheduled to address the obvious questions. Steve, my continuing thoughts for you & your parents as you try to unravel the details of your sister's death.
    It is important to me that he makes statements and reveals what he knows before the tox and fingerprint report come back. His current statement is "no comment".


    Chris Benton and Katie txt'd numerous times to confirm meeting at Mc Donalds at 8:30PM on 4/27. Video confirms the meeting between just the two of them at 8:33PM when Chris enters Katie's car and Katie drives away. No more texts between them after this.

    Until...

    Chris chose to send the following txt to Katie after she died. His last known contact attempt to her or my family.
    4/28 1:13PM PST
    Wut happened? was that ur brother? Lemme kno that ur alrite. have a good day
    I don't have confirmation of Katie's time of death. It is certainly between the night of 4/27 and noon of 4/28. I believe it to be during the morning hours of 4/28. I arrived to the house and found her dead in the garage at ~6pm PST on 4/28. Car missing at that time.



    Video tribute to Katie:
    http://www.sendspace.com/file/tuyfc8
    Last edited by Essense; 05-09-2012 at 01:57 AM.

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  25. #88
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    Essence, I am so very sorry for your loss and extend my sincere condolences to you and your family.

    I am very happy to know you're doing what you can to get some answers and I hope you're successful. I'm not a big fan of the Malibu PD after following the case of Mitrice Richardson. It doesn't surprise me to know they need some prodding and feel certain they'd be more than happy to sweep the whole thing under the rug. Particularly when there is the possibility of a member of a powerful and well-known family involved.

    I will continue to follow Katie's story here and will pray you find the answers you seek.

    I do want to add - do everything you can to use the press to help you. Mitrice's story got a lot of attention in the area - eventually. It took a long time, but the MPD was criticized and scrutinized pretty thoroughly. I don't think they'd welcome another highly publicized case. Squeaky wheel gets the oil!
    ~~~Cynical Optimist~~~

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  27. #89
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    Chris Benton

    Steve, as the father of the "other" Chris Benton, I wanted you and your family to know how sorry Chris and I are for your loss; and thank you for your help in correcting this mistake. KCBS ran a retraction and apology last night, so our ordeal is over.Our prayers are for your family to find the answers you seek.


  28. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by BENTONS View Post
    Steve, as the father of the "other" Chris Benton, I wanted you and your family to know how sorry Chris and I are for your loss; and thank you for your help in correcting this mistake. KCBS ran a retraction and apology last night, so our ordeal is over.Our prayers are for your family to find the answers you seek.
    Thank you for taking the time to let me know, I really appreciate it. I'm glad to hear the ordeal is over.

    I'll relay this support to my family.


  29. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by BENTONS View Post
    Steve, as the father of the "other" Chris Benton, I wanted you and your family to know how sorry Chris and I are for your loss; and thank you for your help in correcting this mistake. KCBS ran a retraction and apology last night, so our ordeal is over.Our prayers are for your family to find the answers you seek.
    I can't figure out how to quote two posts, but I just wanted to say that both Mr. Benton and Katie's brother handled this incident with amazing grace.


  30. #92
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    So I noticed that it appears that prisneyland was also persuaded to take down the picture of the "other" Christopher Benton, lest anyone else assume that he was "the real Christopher Benton", who was apparently the last to see Katie Wilkins alive, and who apparently stole her car.

    Such a coincidence!

    So, today, I am still thinking about that car. The car needs to be found. I think, if I had the means, I would be hiring a private detective right about now.

    If "the real Christopher Benton" was truly a standup guy, he would meet with, accompanied by his lawyer of course, but he would meet with the Sheriff and the detectives to clear his name and to give the family some answers to what happened. That's if he was a real standup guy. A real "Christian", a real product of his growing up at Pepperdine and all it stands for. Maybe he can do that when he gets out of the rehab. This couldn't possibly be his first time in rehab, could it? Why else would his sister have hooked up with that rehab group a few years ago, unless of course her little brother was 'saved' by rehab.

    I think Passages is another rehab place in Malibu. Most people could put their kids through a 4 year state college for what those rehab places in Malibu cost. Betcha.

    Anyhow, the car. Maybe a private detective could find it. I personally don't think the Malibu/Lost Hills Sheriffs have any plans to find it.

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  32. #93
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    Car found. Location: culdesac of neighborood in Woodland Hills, CA. Significance of location not apparent yet. I believe car is fully intact.

    Pro's will do there work. Not many details at this time.


  33. #94
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    http://www.malibutimes.com/articles/...malibunow1.txt
    A summary of the case so far.

    This thread is mentioned in the news story.

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  35. #95
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    A new Los Angeles Times article today Thursday May 10, 2012

    Detectives seek to question son of Pepperdine's president

    Christopher Benton was probably the last person to see Katie Wilkins alive, sheriff's detectives say. The body of the 25-year-old Malibu woman was found in her parents' garage April 28.

    By Martha Groves, Los Angeles Times
    May 10, 2012


    "Los Angeles County sheriff's detectives are seeking to question Christopher A. Benton, the son of Pepperdine University President Andrew K. Benton, in connection with the death of a Malibu woman almost two weeks ago."

    and

    "O'Quinn said Benton had hired Ronald J. Lewis, a Woodland Hills attorney, and has so far declined to talk with investigators. Lewis did not return a call seeking comment.

    "We are not actively looking at Chris Benton as a suspect," O'Quinn said. "We don't have a warrant out." But O'Quinn added that detectives would like to ask Benton such questions as: "Did you end up at her house? How did she end up dead?""

    and

    "Jerry Derloshon, a Pepperdine spokesman, said Wednesday that the school was "regarding this sad occasion as a personal matter." He confirmed, however, that Chris Benton was in a rehabilitation center "the last I knew.""

    There is more but these are the points that stood out to me.

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  37. #96
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    RONALD J. LEWIS, ESQ.
    CRIMINAL TRIAL LAWYER
    21800 Oxnard St, Woodland Hills, CA 91367

    "Mr. Lewis is a well known Criminal Trial Lawyer in Los Angeles with over 36 years of Criminal Jury Trial experience. He has handled a variety of serious felony trials from Murders to Drug Offenses. ..."

    ronaldjlewisattorneyatlaw.com/Profile dot html

    Lots of cul de sacs near this location. Could he have driven directly to the attorney's office? If he took Mulholland Hwy it would be about 14. 5 miles and take about 28 minutes, according to MapQuest.

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  39. #97
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    Quote Originally Posted by Essense View Post
    Car found. Location: culdesac of neighborood in Woodland Hills, CA. Significance of location not apparent yet. I believe car is fully intact.

    Pro's will do there work. Not many details at this time.
    GREAT news to hear!

    I'm anxious to see what they find.
    Say what you mean, mean what you say, but don't say it mean.
    We are all just trying to make sense of an unimaginable crime.

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  41. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by i.b.nora View Post
    A new Los Angeles Times article today Thursday May 10, 2012

    Detectives seek to question son of Pepperdine's president

    Christopher Benton was probably the last person to see Katie Wilkins alive, sheriff's detectives say. The body of the 25-year-old Malibu woman was found in her parents' garage April 28.

    By Martha Groves, Los Angeles Times
    May 10, 2012


    "Los Angeles County sheriff's detectives are seeking to question Christopher A. Benton, the son of Pepperdine University President Andrew K. Benton, in connection with the death of a Malibu woman almost two weeks ago."

    and

    "O'Quinn said Benton had hired Ronald J. Lewis, a Woodland Hills attorney, and has so far declined to talk with investigators. Lewis did not return a call seeking comment.

    "We are not actively looking at Chris Benton as a suspect," O'Quinn said. "We don't have a warrant out." But O'Quinn added that detectives would like to ask Benton such questions as: "Did you end up at her house? How did she end up dead?""

    and

    "Jerry Derloshon, a Pepperdine spokesman, said Wednesday that the school was "regarding this sad occasion as a personal matter." He confirmed, however, that Chris Benton was in a rehabilitation center "the last I knew.""

    There is more but these are the points that stood out to me.
    What stood out to me, is if he is in rehab, is he setting up the "I don't remember anything about that night" defense?
    Just my opinion, of course.

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  43. #99
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    Woodland Hills attorney, car found abandoned in Woodland Hills. hmmmmm. I would love to see a list of Friday & Saturday calls to & from Benton's phone.


    I live on the other side of the country & I knew police were looking for that car. Are we to believe it was parked in a cul-de-sac for days & not reported? When did it get there? And who was driving? I bet it was wiped down to erase fingerprints.

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  45. #100
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    Sounds like daddy stashed him in rehab pretty quickly...out of reach of LE?
    Just my opinion, of course.

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