Search warrants detail relationship between Karen Read, ‘Turtleboy’

Posted at 4:47 PM, January 31, 2024

DEDHAM, Mass. (Court TV) — A search warrant is suggesting a new link between accused killer Karen Read and the blogger known as ‘Turtleboy’ who has been vocal in her defense.

karen read appears in court

Karen Read, accused in the death of police officer John O’Keefe, appears in court Friday, Jan. 15. 2024. (Court TV)

Karen Read is charged with murdering her boyfriend, Boston Police Officer John O’Keefe, who was found dead in the snow outside of the home of a fellow officer. While prosecutors have alleged that Read hit O’Keefe with her car before driving home, injuring him and leaving him to freeze, Read’s attorneys have accused the police of a cover-up that has framed her. Read’s attorneys have accused the owners of the home where O’Keefe was found of being complicit, suggesting a fight inside the house preceded his death.

Aiden Kearney, a local blogger known as ‘Turtleboy,’ had followed Read’s case and was charged in October with witness intimidation and conspiracy for alleged messages he sent to witnesses and investigators in her case. In December, he faced additional charges, including assault and witness intimidation.

Court TV obtained a copy of a search warrant filed on Jan. 22 to search two iPhones associated with Read. In October, Kenneth Mello, the special prosecutor appointed to look into Kearney’s actions, said that Kearney had received material relative to Read’s case from a police dispatcher who illegally accessed a motor vehicle database.

A man in a baseball hat speaks to the camera

Aiden Kearney, known as Turtleboy, is seen here during an interview on Aug. 9, 2023, with Vinnie Politan on ‘Closing Arguments.’ (Court TV)

But the new search warrants filed in Read’s case further link her to Kearney. The documents allege that Read was giving Kearney information about her case that was not made public. They allegedly communicated for dozens of hours by phone and also through third parties while publicly denying they were in contact.

Kearney, who runs several websites and social media accounts, posted “at least 259 articles” about the Karen Read case, according to investigators.

In the search warrant, a woman told police that she worked with Kearney and Read to facilitate messages, which included information about witnesses, the home address of investigators, photos of witnesses, and autopsy photos. In a number of videos, Kearney shared phone numbers and information about witnesses and investigators in the case.

“Kearney described Read as difficult, controlling and [that she] gets irritated with him,” investigators wrote in the filing.

Investigators say there were a total of 189 calls between Kearney and a phone owned by Read, totaling more than 40 hours, as well as messages sent over the encrypted messaging service Signal.

The affidavit also accuses Read of telling Kearney about the federal investigation into the handling of Read’s case.

Prosecutors initially sought to suppress letters to and from their office and federal authorities, indicating that the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts conducted an investigation in 2023 involving witnesses from Read’s case. It is unclear what the status of the investigation is and or who the investigation was targeting.

The search documents obtained by Court TV do not indicate what, if anything, was found on the phones seized.

Read’s murder trial is scheduled to begin in March.