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Alex Kelly (born May 8, 1967) is an American convicted rapist.

Alex Kelly
Born (1967-05-08) May 8, 1967 (age 52)
Conviction(s)Rape (2 counts)
Criminal penalty17 years imprisonment


Early lifeEdit

Kelly is the son of Melanie Reisdorf Kelly, a travel agent, and Joe Kelly, a plumber.[1][2][3] He grew up in the Noroton Heights section of Darien, Connecticut.[1] In 1985, he graduated from Darien High School.[4]

His older brother, Christopher, died of a drug overdose in 1991 while Kelly was on the run.[1][5] His younger brother, Russell, died in 2004 in a car accident in Yellowstone National Park, while Kelly was incarcerated.[6]


Kelly was charged with committing two rapes within a four-day period in Darien, Connecticut, in 1986. He was charged first with the rape of a 16-year-old Stamford girl, and then of a teenager in Darien. In one of the rapes, according to the police, he encountered a girl who lived near him and offered her a ride home from a party. He was later also charged with drug possession and two counts of kidnapping.

In addition to those cases, five other women have told prosecutors and an author that Kelly raped them when he was a teen, although he has never been charged with those attacks.[7]

Before his trial was due to begin in 1987, Kelly fled the United States and spent the next seven years on the run, mostly in Europe.[8] Kelly's parents allegedly supported him financially during this seven-year period, although they may have been unaware of his exact locations. Law enforcement authorities suspected that the parents had been in contact with their son and, on at least one occasion, raided the parents' house in an attempt to find evidence of Kelly's location or their assistance to him.[9]

In 1995, the Connecticut State Police discovered photos in the Kelly home of Alex with his parents in Europe the previous year. His parents were charged with obstruction, after which Kelly surrendered in Switzerland. He was extradited to the United States on rape and kidnapping charges. Several lesser counts were excluded, as they were not specifically listed in the extradition treaty between the two nations.[10] While out on bail, Kelly was allowed by the court to take classes at Norwalk Community College.[11][12] Kelly faced two trials in 1997. After the first was declared a mistrial, the second resulted in his conviction for the first rape and a sentence of 17 years in prison.[13] He pleaded no contest to the second rape and was sentenced to an additional 10 years in prison (sentence to run concurrently with the 17-year sentence).[14]

In 2005, after having served eight years of his 17-year sentence, Kelly appeared before a Connecticut parole board; his bid for release was rejected.[15] At the hearing Kelly apologized many times saying he was "hypercompetitive" and self-centered, and that he has finally realized that the world is bigger than him.[15]

On November 24, 2007, Kelly was released from prison on good behavior. He is required to serve 10 years probation, perform 200 hours of community service, pay a $10,000 fine, and register with the Connecticut sex offender registry. Kelly has claimed that, while in prison, he earned a bachelor's degree in economics and third-world development.[16]

Kelly worked for six years, until 2014, as a skydiving instructor in Ellington, Connecticut.[17]

According to a 2015 Associated Press article, Kelly eventually left Connecticut Parachutists due to erratic behavior that involved punching one skydiver for touching his equipment and groping a male skydiver's genitals. Labor Department documents obtained by the AP through a Freedom of Information request showed that Kelly had also threatened a pilot with bodily harm in an argument over use of an aircraft.[18]

In August 2015, he was reported to have purchased a Cessna 182 airplane, and to have filed paperwork starting his own businesses, Freefall Aviation LLC and Para-Lease LLC.[17]

As of February 2017, Kelly is a certified flight instructor and is the owner of Green Mountain Skydiving in Bennington, Vermont.[19]

As of May 2018 Kelly is also the owner and tandem skydive instructor of Berkshire Skydiving in North Adams, Massachusetts. He participates in tandem jumps with both female and male customers.[20]

It was reported in October 2018 that Mr. Kelly's Green Mountain skydiving had its lease with Bennington Airport terminated by the state of Vermont the previous month over safety violations.[21]

Portrayals in the mediaEdit

Alex Kelly's story was recounted in an episode of Dominick Dunne's Court TV series Dominick Dunne's Power, Privilege, and Justice.

It was also dramatized in the television movie Crime in Connecticut: The Story of Alex Kelly (also known as The Return of Alex Kelly), a two-hour production originally broadcast on March 16, 1999.[22] Kelly was portrayed by actor Matthew Settle in the telefilm. The Kelly case was also featured in an episode of A&E Network's series American Justice.

Alex Kelly's case was also featured on ABC's news magazine show, Turning Point, whose segment title was "Fugitive Son: The Hunt for Alex Kelly."

Vanity Fair Confidential aired an episode entitled "The Fugitive Son" on January 23, 2017. It was the third-season premiere episode broadcast on the Investigative Discovery channel. At the end of the episode, it was revealed that four other women had come forward during the time Alex was on the run, saying that they also had been raped by him.


  1. ^ a b c Susan Cheever (27 April 1997). "Son of Darien". The New York Times. Retrieved 14 January 2015.
  2. ^ Bill Hewitt (4 November 1996). "Judgment Days". People. Retrieved 20 September 2014.
  3. ^ "Why Aren't Fugitive's Parents Arrested?". Hartford Courant. 10 April 1995. Retrieved 20 September 2014.
  4. ^ Lynne Tuohy (16 October 1996). "After More Than 10-year Wait, Woman Testifies In Rape Case". Hartford Courant. Retrieved 20 September 2014.
  5. ^ Bill Hewitt (20 February 1995). "The Flight of Alex Kelly". People. Retrieved 20 September 2014.
  6. ^ "Russell Kelly Obituary". 11 August 2014. Retrieved 26 July 2016.
  7. ^ "RAPE VICTIMS' CRY: LET THIS 'PREPPY' PERV ROT IN JAIL". New York Post. 2005-01-24. Retrieved 2018-05-30.
  8. ^ Neuffer, Elizabeth. "Accused Rapist And His Flight Trouble Darien", The New York Times, August 27, 1987. Accessed November 5, 2007. "A year ago Alex Kelly -a former juvenile offender who became an honors student in high school and a top athlete here -was charged with the rapes of two teen-age girls."
  9. ^ Judson, George. "From Ski Slopes of Europe to a Rape Trial?; Eight Years After Fleeing, an Ex-Darien Athlete Surrenders in Switzerland", The New York Times, January 31, 1995. Accessed November 5, 2007. "But the authorities' satisfaction at having him in custody is tempered by the length of time he avoided trial, the help he may have received from his parents and legal maneuvering now aimed at reducing his charges. Prosecutors and investigators refuse to comment on whether either of his parents, Joseph and Melanie Kelly, will be charged with hindering prosecution."
  10. ^ "Switzerland to Return Fugitive in 1986 Rape-Kidnapping Cases", The New York Times, April 23, 1995. Accessed November 5, 2007.
  11. ^ "Anomaly in a Rape Case - Freedom for Alex Kelly -". 22 June 1997. Retrieved 14 January 2015.
  12. ^ "In Retrial, Alex Kelly Is Convicted Of Rape Committed 11 Years Ago". 13 June 1997. Retrieved 14 January 2015.
  13. ^ Williams, Monty. "Conviction in Kelly Rape Case Ends Prosecutor's 11-Year Trial", The New York Times, June 15, 1997. Accessed November 5, 2007.
  14. ^ Glaberson, William. "Alex Kelly Avoids Trial In 2d Rape", The New York Times, December 24, 1998. Accessed November 5, 2007.
  15. ^ a b Yardley, William. Parole Bid Is Rejected for Rapist Who Fled U.S., The New York Times, March 4, 2005. Accessed November 5, 2007.
  16. ^ Christoffersen, John. "Alex Kelly released from prison", Newsday, November 23, 2007. Accessed November 23, 2007. Archived November 25, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
  17. ^ a b Pat Eaton-Robb (20 August 2015). "1980s 'preppy rapist' Alex Kelly now a skydiving instructor". Associated Press. Archived from the original on 22 August 2015. Retrieved 20 August 2015.
  18. ^ "1980s 'preppy rapist' Alex Kelly now a skydiving instructor". AP News. Retrieved 2018-05-30.
  19. ^ Green Mountain Skydiving, Bennington, Vermont. Retrieved April 12, 2017.
  20. ^ Landes, Josh. "Rapist Famous For Evading Justice Establishes Skydiving Business In North Adams, Questions Delays". Retrieved 2018-05-30.
  21. ^ Landes, Josh. "Alex Kelly Contract Terminated At Bennington Airport In September, Still Operates In North Adams". Retrieved 2018-10-18.
  22. ^ "Crime in Connecticut: The Story of Alex Kelly". IMDb. 16 March 1999. Retrieved 20 September 2014.

External linksEdit