Brittany Clardy, woman found dead inside towed vehicle, was a prostitute, police say [UPDATE]

Categories: Homicide Files
clardy.jpg
Palmer (left) has been arrested in connection with the disappearance and death of Clardy (right).
:::: UPDATE :::: Alberto Palmer told police he killed Brittany Clardy during postcoital "tussle"

Authorities have arrested Alberto Palmer, 23, in connection with the death of Brittany Clardy, the 18-year-old St. Paul woman who was found dead inside a car at a Columbia Heights impound lot last month.

SEE ALSO: Corey Thomas gets 34 years for strangling girlfriend, stuffing her in St. Paul crawl space

Next to no details about the circumstances of Clardy's death and Palmer's arrest have been released, though a press conference about the case is scheduled for this afternoon at 3 p.m.

Clardy left her St. Paul home on February 11 and simply vanished. The Star Tribune tells what we know about the sad story thus far from there:
On Feb. 13, the car that her body was later found in was towed from a Brooklyn Park apartment complex to an impound lot in Columbia Heights by a company that the apartment complex contracts with to remove unauthorized vehicles. Last Thursday, eight days after the car was towed, her body was found "concealed inside the passenger compartment," according to the Anoka County Sheriff's Office, which is investigating the death along with police in Brooklyn Park, Columbia Heights and St. Paul.
And the Pioneer Press conveys what we know right now about Palmer's arrest:
Palmer's arrest came after detectives issued search warrants Wednesday, March 6, in Woodbury and Brooklyn Park, which yielded evidence that gave probable cause to arrest Palmer, [a press release] said.

The suspect was wanted in the Atlanta, Ga., area for kidnapping, false imprisonment, fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct and first-degree assault.
In an interview with KSTP, a neighbor of Clardy's characterized Brittany as "a beautiful young girl, always laughing and smiling, and always had friends around. And she'd always wave."

KSTP also provides a few biographical details about Clardy:
For several years, Clardy worked with kids at the after school program at the North Dale Recreation Center in St. Paul.

"She was a very nice girl, she worked up at the playground with other children," Ksiazek said. Clardy was a student at Highland Park Senior High School until January 2012. School officials say she was very social, well-known and well-liked. Students and staff remembered her wonderful sense of humor.
:::: UPDATE ::::

During a news conference today, Anoka County authorities said their investigation revealed Brittany Clardy was working as a prostitute at the time of her death.

According to authorities, Clardy had posted online ads soliciting johns, and Alberto Palmer was one of her clients.

Investigators said they hope Clardy's sad story will serve as an example of how dangerous it is to get involved with online prostitution.

Palmer has "made some admissions" with regard to Clardy's disappearance and death, authorities said.

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10 comments
Anna Bergdall
Anna Bergdall

I think you should begin using more woman-friendly language in your reporting. The term sex worker is valid and respectful. The way this article discusses her death in connection to prostitution - particularly with what the investigators say about how dangerous it is to 'get involved with online prostitution' leans the reader toward blaming the victim for putting herself in a dangerous situation which is clearly unfair. Nobody should kill anyone. This is a case of hatred toward women, and it's just enraging to see her labeled "a prostitute." She was a young woman who was meeting a client for transactional sex, who MURDERED her. The words we use matter.

karlasg
karlasg

I have to say that I don’t believe for one minute that Brittany was a prostitute.It just doesn’t add up for a college bond high school student who was home every night and talked to her mom often, and worked with kids for 3 years.Even if there is evidence saying that she was working as prostitute around the time she was murdered, I feel the police was wrong for sharing this information with the public.They are holding many facts close to the chest.They could have held this one until trial.My belief from the facts in the press conference is that she was kidnapped and possible forced to be a sex slave, if the police facts are correct about this online ad.I do feel that the Anoka police have done Brittany and her family wrong by leading the public to believe that she worked willingly as a prostitute at this time. My guess as well is that the only people who are saying that she was a prostitute are the people who had something to do with her murder.

amwagener
amwagener

I find it gratuitous that you mention, in your headline, the occupation of the young woman who was murdered. It's salacious and unnecessary considering that she was known more for caring for young children.

footnotegirl
footnotegirl

@asdfasdf @amwagener Well, no. A murderer is what got her killed. Her occupation had almost nothing to do with it. People have been murdered answering ads on craigslist for buying cars, it wasn't their need for a car that got them killed. 

MotherJones
MotherJones

@footnotegirl So because she was black, she would have eventually have been killed according to your sentiment? That sounds racist to me.And  you sound like a moron.

footnotegirl
footnotegirl

@MotherJones The second part of your reply is true. Probably more women who work as prostitutes are killed each year than people answering sales ads. Women living on the fringes are frequently victimized because they are easy targets. After all, who will care? 

The first part of your reply is baseless speculation. If she had not been engaged in prostitution, something or someone else might have killed her. Or, she could have, like many people, been working in the sex industry and not been killed.  Also? Victim blaming. See below.

@Frank He was targeting women in the sex industry. That doesn't change my statement. It still wasn't her occupation or her plying of it that got her killed. It was the murderer who killed her. 

MotherJones
MotherJones

@footnotegirl And if she had not engaged in this type of activity, she would still be alive today. I would wager to guess that more hookers are killed each year than those who respond to craigslist car ads.

Frank
Frank

@footnotegirl While I agree that we should not blame the victim, it is clear that the suspect has a record for attacking sex industry workers--in fact he was wanted in Atlanta for attacking an escort there. It is clear that he was targeting people in that industry.

It is also interesting to note that while it was widely reported in other media that the service that Palmer used to meet his victims was backpage.com.  Could it be that CP chose not to report that because CP has the same corporate ancestry as backpage.com?

CityPages likes to fancy itself as a defender of truth, but in a case in which a woman was murdered because one of CityPages' cousin industry promotes business that exploit vulnerable wymin, CP remains strangeley silent on that point.  

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