Ex-girlfriend of former cop charged with hiding bodies: 'He was always very kind'

CREATED Jun 26, 2014

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WALWORTH COUNTY - Jamie Bates has photos of Zelich playing with her pets, and her young daughter. But she always knew he had a dark side.

"He did tell me that he had a girl who he was with for seven years, and he used to keep her caged 90 percent of the time," Bates says. "I thought that was really odd. It was creepy. But nothing was ever like that between me and him."
Bates met Zelich on bondage.com, a website that shut-down last month. 
"He ended up driving from Milwaukee to Michigan to meet me, and we went to a hotel," she says. "We were there for the whole weekend. We had a lot of fun."
In 2006, Bates moved with her children to Milwaukee to live with Zelich.  By that time, she says they were not in a sexual relationship. Just friends and roommates. They lived together for about a year.
"He was always very kind to me," she says.
Jamie is disgusted to learn he's been charged with hiding the bodies of two women. Police say he met them online too, and had sexual encounters with both.
"That hits too close to home for me," Bates says. "It could have been me. I can't believe he is capable of doing something like that. I had my kids around him. It kills me."
Bates says she never noticed anything sinister inside Zelich's apartment.  But at some point, his life apparently took a very dark turn.