Pain and hurt have carved lines into Jeffery Wellmaker’s face that cannot be erased. And his voice occasionally breaks when he talks about the love of his life, Kelley Ann Jaeger. Jaeger was shot down in the early morning hours of October 3, 2009, two days before her 40th birthday. Authorities say her death was a vicious hate crime committed by members of the Vinlanders Social Club, a notorious white supremacist gang known for its extreme violence and affinity for Nazi symbolism. Wellmaker gave Phoenix New Times an exclusive interview the eve of his testimony in the ongoing first-degree murder trial of Travis Ricci, which began June 6 in Maricopa County Superior Court and is expected to run for the next several weeks. The Vinlander gang member is charged with killing Jaeger with a 12-gauge shotgun fired from the passenger’s side of a white sedan.(…) The vehicle passed them, did a U-turn and circled back. Wellmaker knew something was wrong. “I said, ‘Baby, watch out!,’” he recalled. “I saw fire, and then I saw what looked like flies coming out at me. I felt a punch in my stomach, and then the wind. Everything speeded up, and then she dropped. “I said, ‘Baby, you hit?’” Wellmaker saw that those deadly “flies” had ripped through Jaeger’s torso, and that she was trying to breathe. Distraught, he called 911 from the pay phone. (…) Earlier that evening, as Wellmaker and Jaeger were walking near Palma Park, at 12th Street and Dunlap Avenue, they were approached by a muscular white male in shorts with his shirt off, who taunted them with racial epithets. “Hey, nigger, what are you doing with that white girl?” the man asked. Wellmaker turned toward the man, but Jaeger pulled him away. “C’mon, baby, let’s go,” Wellmaker remembered her saying. The man followed them as they headed toward Seventh Street, yelling things like “spearchucker” and something about “white power.” When Wellmaker looked back at him, his eyes were drawn to a unique tattoo with zig-zag lettering across the man’s stomach. He later saw the man hop into another vehicle and leave. About 45 minutes later, the white car came around and dealt death to Jaeger. Wellmaker recognized the shooter as the same man who had followed them from Palma Park.
Exclusive: Jeffery Wellmaker Details Murder of White Girlfriend as Neo-Nazi Stands Trial
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