Murder Victim’s Mom Has a Message for Teens
"I'm not saying, ‘don't trust anyone,' I'm just saying know your boundaries, don't do things that make you uncomfortable."
Those are the words of heartbroken Nora Clapp, who would have celebrated her daughter's graduation this year at McCook High School. Her goal is to have other parents be able to see their kids get to go to prom, then off to college, and get married.
Fourteen-year-old Kailee Clapp was brutally murdered January 21st, 2011 by Stathis Kirkpatrick, an acquaintance she knew through her friends and local parties. In November 2012, Kirkpatrick received a life sentence in prison for slaying and burning her body in the Bartley Cemetery.
Kirkpatrick is said to have lured Clapp from her bedroom that night using "any tactic he could."
"Kailee said ‘no' a few times, and she kept saying no, kept saying no, finally, she [went outside]," explained Nora, who read their final conversation on her daughter's iPod after it was released from police custody.
That was the last time she'd ever step foot in her house alive.
Nora Clapp has made friends all over the world with her tragic story of a teen girl gone too soon. People identify with her story. "We have a connection through Kailee," said Nora, whose heart breaks as she watches similar stories happen all over the country.
"At first I thought my message to the world was to stop your kids from experiencing pain, and then I realized I can't do that. We can't do that. And I realized all you can do is the best you can do, and make your kids realize the impact of not trusting their instincts," such as the instincts Kailee ultimately didn't follow the night of her death.
Kailee was considered "a friend to many," and "she saw the best in people," her sister Karen Clapp told NTV in a previous interview.
"Stathis used her kindness against her," added her mother. Nora and Karen were asleep when Kailee was talking with Stathis and lured from her bed.
This fall, a UK magazine called "Pick Me Up!" featured a spread on Kailee's story using mother Nora's point of view as the sounding board. Once again, it was someone – a reporter – who identified with Kailee's story, and wanted to befriend Nora. The colorful two-page spread is titled "Lured to Her Death."
"It's my hope that some young girl will think twice before going out that door one night when someone she's an acquaintance with says, ‘hey come outside.' That people are more aware of people in their lives. That if it seems like it's not right, that they go with their gut instinct and say, 'no, you don't need to be hanging around that person.'"