Crime

He killed in Massachusetts and may be in Coral Gables, police say

Cornel Bell, 46, wanted by Massachusetts state police for the murder on Saturday of Michele Clarke, his former girlfriend, may be in Coral Gables, police said.
Cornel Bell, 46, wanted by Massachusetts state police for the murder on Saturday of Michele Clarke, his former girlfriend, may be in Coral Gables, police said.

Cornel Bell, a man of many aliases and a violent past who state police believe killed a woman in Massachusetts last weekend, could be in Coral Gables, police warned Friday. He is considered to be armed and dangerous.

Massachusetts State Police said Bell, 46, who in the past dated Michele Clarke, 33, used some type of “sharp force” instrument on Saturday to kill her in her Weymouth, Massachusetts, apartment.

He is believed to be driving a dark blue, 2005 Ford pickup truck and has family ties in the Gables area, the state police said. Coral Gables Police Department spokesperson Kelly Denham said her office was notified about Bell’s possible whereabouts on Thursday night.

“We don’t know why they think he’s in the Coral Gables area,” Denham said.

A friend of Clarke’s who was worried about her absence notified police early Saturday that she was missing. By 4 a.m., police found Clarke’s lifeless body in her apartment.

The Patriot Ledger of Weymouth reported that Clarke was bartending at a restaurant called Mount Horeb Lodge on the night before she was found dead. The paper also said she has a 6-year-old son who was staying with family at the time of his mother’s death and that in 2012 Bell had been deported to Jamaica after being convicted of marijuana possession and passport fraud.

Initially, police said they were looking for 44-year-old Kerrol Florizel Bailey in connection with Clarke’s murder. But a day later the district attorney’s office said that was one of many aliases used by Bell.

Bell, according to Massachusetts troopers, has a long history of violent crime, including charges of assault with intent to murder in 1997 and armed robbery in 2002. Aliases he has used in the past, police said, include Tony Smith, Mark Simmons, Cornel James, Cornel Carara, Cavin Lebert and Bailey.

He still has three license driver’s licenses in Massachusetts under three different names, police said. They also released the license tag on the blue Ford pickup he may be driving: FF47BK.

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