Laura Simonson was a mother of seven whose missing persons case settled on the desk of Farmington, Minnesota PD Detective Sgt. Lee Hollatz. Seven months after he began working the case, Simonson’s body turned up in a suitcase beside a Wisconsin highway. With it, was the body of Jenny Gamez in another suitcase. Both women were found naked. Simonson had a rope around her neck, and a gag in her mouth. Gamez was handcuffed.
Steven Zelich was Hollatz’s number one suspect in the Simonson disappearance, and his investigation. According to a report from The Daily Beast, the morning Zelich was arrested, he had managed to connect to an S&M website, where he allegedly posted under the handle “Mr. Handcuffs.” He had been advertising for a permanent “slave” on the website, and police believe that the women were people he’d met online.
According to an online classified ad at Secondcityclassifieds.com posted by someone claiming to be family, they knew Zelich was keeping Simonson as a slave, and not allowing her to speak to her family. They posted personal information on Zelich, including his personal cell phone and email address, and encouraged readers to harass him until he released Simonson.
Zelich is expected to claim the deaths were accidental, the result of rough sex gone horribly wrong, He is being held on $1M bond.
Police are also investigating a related case, where Zelich is accused of attempted rape.
CBS 58 News brings us this coverage of the identification of Jenny Gamez:
Ex-Cop Steven M. Zelich Allegedly Dumped Bodies in Suitcases (NBC News)
How ‘MrHandcuffs’ Ended Up With Two Corpses in Suitcases (The Daily Beast)
2nd victim in Steven Zelich case identified as Jenny Gamez (CBS 58 News)