This Bell's Gonna Tell

By

Bonnie M. Wells

www.starlightinnerprize.com

This story is part of the Starlight Inner-Prize -

"Lookin' For A Killer Series"

As well as part of the Pure Coincidence Book Series:

A Real "Wild" Bill....



The longer I knew Wild Bill, the "wilder" he became!

The man was constantly on the prowl for women ... day or night .... made no difference to him. And he picked them up faster than any man I'd ever known.

He'd bring her home with him for however long she'd stay ..... Most were one night stands. Many were exotic dancers and hookers. Actually these seemed to be his favorites. He was always going to marry them and "settle them down!" Hell, he couldn't even settle himself down, much less some woman with a drug addiction and more emotional problems than a dozen psychiatrists could deal with. Almost all were products of a social system gone awry. I was reasonably certain he couldn't fix in a few days what it took years for the "system" to create. But I did wonder why he always seemed to go after "needy" women. Perhaps that's the only kind that would give him the time of day .... until his money ran out, that is. Then, even those women dumped him.

Yeah, old Billy Boy could sure "get the women"!

But he had more trouble "keeping them" than the average Tom, Dick and Harry combined!

By mid summer of 1992 he appeared to be having some trouble finding "local" women that were willing to put up with him even long enough to take his money!

Eventually he bailed out of this area and began picking up women from Athens County, Meigs County and even further "down river." His trips to Huntington and Charleston West Virginia became weekly excursions, and my phone rang constantly with people wanting to know where he was. His ex-wife, his son, his sister and mother, his former mother-in-law ....they all called. I answered the best I could.

He met several women that summer .....dated each a few days and then moved on. I usually heard about them when he'd start bragging. Of course if he knew the women's names, he seldom told me ..... so I had to do my own "investigating," to determine who they were and where they lived. And of course, not knowing their names, I had to call them something so I could keep them straightened out. After all, he often got them all confused and couldn't remember who he had a date with, where he was supposed to go for dinner ..... or even if he liked certain foods. That was part of my job!!! Remember where he was supposed to be and what foods he liked or disliked! Man was absolutely weird!

The Black Widow

He picked up one woman whom I nicknamed "The Black Widow" .....

Well .... she was a widow and she was part black .... so it made sense to me!

The "relationship" with The Black Widow lasted for a few weeks. I talked to her a couple of times and she seemed like a nice enough person. I guess the real problem started when she told Wild Bill that she thought I was nice and that she liked me! That must have been the last thing he wanted to hear! Well, looking back, I think the last thing he wanted was for me to see and meet the woman. In 1992 I didn't quite understand ... but eventually I would.

The Black Widow had already been dropped and a new woman found by the time I got the entire story of how and where Wild Bill had met her.

He'd been sitting in a dark corner of a beer joint, listening to an argument between the Black Widow and her boyfriend. The woman was well on her way to being highly intoxicated and the boyfriend eventually had enough of her mouth. He told her he was finished with her and stormed out of the bar.

Wild Bill had been patiently waiting ..... he moved right in and began dancing with the woman and buying her even more drinks.

He was in the process of carrying her {she was still on her feet, but required a lot of help from him} when his ex-wife's son came through the door and recognized him!

The boy spoke to Wild Bill and went on into the bar, while Wild Bill continued to help the woman out of the bar.

Her boyfriend was finished with her. He had told her the truth. He left town that night and went back to Kansas, which is where he came from. To this day, I believe he has no idea how fortunate he actually is. But the Black Widow does. Oh yes, she knows. She stopped running to the bars. Stopped drinking. Smart woman.

She told me herself that she did not recall leaving the bar with Wild Bill; didn't remember anything about the trip, and woke up in his bed the next day and had to ask who he was!!! Talk about a dangerous way to live. Thank God that boy came in and saw Wild Bill with the woman.

If that had not happened, and that woman had been murdered that night, there is no doubt whatsoever that her Kansas boyfriend would have been charged with her murder. There were many witnesses to their argument, and he did "run". He has no idea .... and the sad part is, I wouldn't have known a thing about it either, and would probably have believed the man did kill her.

The Toothless Wonder


The relationships with the "Black Widow" and the "Toothless Wonder" overlapped each other for awhile!

That was customary for him too. He cheated on everyone ....lied to everyone!

Sindee said he was an "Equal Opportunity Escort," and we laughed. There wasn't a lot of "fun" in our lives. And yet, I suppose there was more than in the lives of those we wondered about......

considering most of them were dead!

He said the "Toothless Wonder" was wearing a bikini and serving hot dogs on an Athens County street corner when he met her! Damn.....that sounded like a "real woman" to me! Sure wish I could have met her. Well, he informed me that he intended to "marry" this one because she was "a real looker," and almost perfect, with one minor flaw. She'd gotten all drunk ed up one night and wrecked her car and knocked her front teeth out! It didn't matter though, ' cause you couldn't tell unless she smiled!

I had an absolute blast with this one! "Well buddy, you better grab her and marry her quick, because one week around you and the world will never know she has no front teeth, because she will never smile again!" I chided him. Ticked him off .....again! I was real good at that. I always knew which buttons to push ..... and every once in a while, I pushed all of them and just held them there for awhile!

Wild Bill only dated The Toothless Wonder one week and then she was history just like all the others and he moved on to The Pomeroy Dot, The Racin' Pony and various others.

And eventually, he calmed down and resumed a near normal life ... if there was such a thing anymore.

My mother said she thought he "took spells," .... I'd heard of "casting spells," but never taking them! I wasn't sure what she meant but it was the closest I'd come to an explanation for his crazy behavior so I finally accepted the diagnosis, and watched for the next "spell" to be taken!

And believe it or not, there were indicators of when these spells were coming on him. Eventually I learned those indicators real well. They continue to work today just as well as they worked back in those early days.

Billy The Kid Rides Again!


Wild Bill went to jail in April of 1994 and was released on ...... June 25th.

***"See The Symbolic Murder Of My Daughter for shocking details involving June 25th"

June 25th was [Sindee's] birthday, and we "celebrated" by hitting the streets right behind him! I'd been working frantically while he sat in jail and I'd uncovered a very strange fact.

First of all, I discovered that he'd gone to jail back in 1980 for the same type of crime. He'd been arrested on ..... December 26th.....

I never could find out who the arresting officer was back in 1980, but I was guessing it was a Washington County Deputy who came to his "out of the city" home and arrested him. I began to take an even closer look at the still unsolved murder of Washington County Deputy Ray Clark.

I'd been "nosing" around the case for a while anyway because of something Wild Bill had done. I'd mentioned the Clark case to him one time and said something about the man being killed with a shotgun while in his own home. A few months later I learned that Wild Bill had sold his shotgun as soon as I'd mentioned Clark's murder!!! He'd had that gun since he was twelve years old. He tried to buy his brother's gun......which was just like his .... but his brother wouldn't sell it to him! I thought this was extremely strange behavior. None of my brothers sold their shotguns because I was asking questions about a dead cop. My dad didn't sell his. My husband didn't sell his. In fact I couldn't find anyone else who reacted so strangely.

I counted the days between December 28th and February 7th, which was when Ray Clark had been murdered: 42 .... It was forty two days, but sounded longer because of the new year.

Day 42 Commin' On Strong


"We have to be out there on the forty-second day, and night, and maybe longer.....

So, we'd better get some rest," I informed Sindee. "Rest? What's that?" she quipped. We'd already put every cop in the valley under the table and the cab drivers started waving goodnight as they headed home! Even the truckers and the hookers bowed out and left the valley to us! Eventually the cops would start asking where we were if they hadn't seen us for a day or so!

August 6th, 1994:


Around 9:00 PM Sindee saw Wild Bill with a blond haired woman in his truck.

She had never seen this woman before. We decided we'd better "look into this a little closer" and decided to stay together that night instead of taking separate vehicles. It was easier to spot two cars running the same area than one lone Trans-Am that could haul ass if needed. Sindee buckled in and off we went. She always said riding with me was like visiting an amusement park. Well, I did drive. No doubt about that. I'd learned on ice, snow and gravel and there just wasn't much I couldn't do with a vehicle.

I found Wild Bill's Toyota truck parked in front of "Sugar's Bar" and took a side street so he wouldn't hear the Trans-Am.

I parked the car beneath a huge tree, only a few hundred feet away from the Toyota. But it was so dark under the tree that I knew he could not see my vehicle if he looked up the side street. He, on the other hand had parked the Toyota under a street light, so we had a perfect view of it.

Within about half an hour we saw Wild Bill and a blond come out of the club. They sat in the truck a few minutes, and then the woman got out and went back toward the club. She yelled something to Wild Bill but with the interference of traffic sounds, we couldn't understand what she said.

He started the Toyota, and I started the Trans-Am. He glanced my direction and I said, "Oh hell, he heard the car start up. We have to get out of here before he cuts around the block and comes looking for me." Sindee agreed.

As soon as he'd gotten out of sight I headed for Ohio. I figured he'd be hot on my tail and I wanted to be where the Belpre police could see me. But he didn't follow me. He didn't come back to Belpre. We waited and waited, and of course we speculated....

"I'll bet that woman went back inside to tell someone she was going out with him. Maybe she went back to get her purse or something. Maybe her vehicle was parked in the rear parking lot and she went there to get her purse and he drove around the corner to pick her up in the truck." The possibilities were endless, and we were still discussing them when he came rolling off the Belpre side of the bridge after five o'clock that morning......alone!

"He's alone! There's no one with him." Sindee said as he drove past us while pretending not to see the Trans-Am or us! "Must have refused to pay her! Maybe she refused to come home with him! Maybe he treated her to a real motel .....well, not unless she was a real woman!" I giggled.

We did have some fun at his expanse, I suppose. Still, at five o'clock in the morning, when you haven't slept in thirty some hours, everything is funny.....even Wild Bill!

There was one thing about Sindee's and my laughter. It never lasted very long. Occasionally it had even been known to go from laughter to tears, all in the same breath!.... That was usually when we discovered we hadn't actually gotten ahead of Wild Bill after all, but instead he'd pulled another one over on us.

August 15th, 1994:


Mae Belle "Clark" was murdered and the coroner said she'd been dead six to eight days when she was found near Charleston, West Virginia. They said someone had done a real number on her. I guess her mouth and hands were taped with duct tape, but the strangest thing of all was the fact that she had no front teeth .... possibly from an old injury of some type!

I counted the days between the night we'd seen Wild Bill with the blond haired woman. Seven days. There was one week between that night and the day Mae Belle Clark was found dead. I drove to Charleston and back. Three hours was plenty of time for the round trip. That's how long it was between the time Sindee and I left Parkersburg and when Wild Bill came "home alone" on the morning of August 7th (night of August 6th).

"Clark?" My God Sindee, her name was Clark! "We got another "duplication going here. Ray Clark......Mae Clark.... both 42 days from his arrest or release from jail ..... oh boy!

*** See "The Clark Trio" for astonishing details"

"One week around you and she'll never smile again."

My words echoed as if someone had shouted them from a mountain top.

The Toothless Wonder had spent precisely "one week" around Wild Bill.

Was Mae Belle Clark and my Toothless Wonder the same woman?

Could they possibly be the same woman?

I didn't know......I didn't even know if the woman Sindee had seen him with around nine o'clock was the same one the two of us saw him with later that night.

If not, where was the nine o'clock woman? What had he done with her?

But there was one thing I was absolutely sure of.....

Mae Belle Clark would never smile again.

1996

The interview with the Wood County, West Virginia Detective concerned another case .... but as soon as I could swing the subject to Mae Belle Clark's case, I seized the opportunity. My own interview was taped so if the detective had questions later, the tape could be replayed for the answer. Meanwhile, I might only get one chance to ask the questions that had plagued me for two solid years.

I was a little surprised to learn that the cop knew Mae Belle. I guess they had gone to school together.

I'd never seen a picture of Mae Belle Clark. They guarded pictures like they were solid gold around here for some reason. So I asked if the cop could tell me what Mae Belle looked like.

My reply was a good solid stare for several seconds and then ....

"She was about your height .....

had about the same shade of blond hair ....

wore her hair about like yours .....

was about your size .....

The officer's eyes shifted from me to the paper on the desk.

The averted eyes did not conceal the realization in the rest of the answer ... ....

Mae Belle looked a lot like you, Bonnie ... she looked a lot like you."

A picture of me taken in 1996:

January 2012

Some irrelevant information has been removed from this page:

I have recently been told that Mae Belle's case is closed, and her death has been deemed 'from natural causes.'

If this suits her family and friends, then I guess it's okay with me too.

I will probably remove this entire page and case from my web site and files later this year, as I am going back through pages and either listing them as active or inactive. If they are inactive, then they will be removed from my web site because no one needs the confusion of thinking a person was murdered, only to discover they died of natural causes --- although I still think the timing and the duct tape in Mae Belle's Clark's case were very odd.

Bonnie M. Wells

The "Clark" Trio / 42 Days And Holding

A Ray Of Hope

Judith Petty

Starlight Inner-Prizes

The Symbolic Cases

Lookin' For A Killer Series

Dreams Panned-Out Series

The Without A Trace Series

Pure Coincidence - Page One

Pure Coincidence - Page Two

Pure Coincidence - Page Three

Case Directory

This page updated: 6-27-2003 / 2-12-04 / 3-03-07 / June 2007 / July 2010 / Jan. 2011 / Jan. 2012 / March 26, 2013 // BMW