Court says Wolfe's income nearly double Fretwell's; friend says she once lived in car
Yamhill County District Attorney Brad Berry said the bodies of Karissa Fretwell, 25, and her son, William "Billy" Fretwell, 3, were found Saturday. The two were last seen alive by friends and family on May 13 and reported missing on May 17.
William's father, Michael Wolfe, 52, has been charged with murdering and kidnapping both of them.
Before Karissa and William were killed, she and Wolfe were engaged in a legal dispute over child support. Investigators said Wolfe told police that a hearing on that topic held April 15 "did not go well."
Wolfe was ordered to pay about 28 percent of his monthly income to child support, and his income was nearly double Fretwell's according to court records.
Mykeal Moats, a friend of Fretwell's, told a KATU reporter that at one point Fretwell was living out of her car.
Before a judge issued a ruling during the child support hearing Wolfe tried to file an objection.
"I just want my child support based on the actual money that I make," he tells the judge in a court recording.
The judge then asks Fretwell if she has any objections.
"The only thing I'd like to note is that this is the third change in income in the last three months that he's submitted," she says.
After looking over records the judge and the prosecutor established Wolfe's income at $3,775.51 a month. They said Fretwell's monthly income was $2,078.05 with daycare costs of $590.
The judge ultimately ordered Wolfe to pay Fretwell $904 a month in child support and to spend $135.55 monthly on William's health insurance premiums.
Moats said through it all Fretwell kept smiling.
"Even when crap was hitting the fan or things in life were hard, she was always finding joy and the positives out of things," Moats said. "Always smiling. They literally lit up a room. Billy was just a little goofball full of energy. Typical little boy who just made everybody smile and Karissa was always smiling. Like all the pictures that you see of her smiling, that literally was her face almost 24-seven."
Moats said she met Fretwell about three years ago in a sign language class at Chemeketa Community College. At the time they were both moms working multiple jobs to stay afloat.
Moats said Fretwell was struggling.
"Part of the time when I was talking to her, she was living in her car and had her son and a cat with an amputated leg living in her car with her," Moats explained. "She was just so caring about everything, even though it seemed like life was against her at times."
Moats said Fretwell did not know Wolfe was married until a few days before she found out she was pregnant. She said Wolfe offered to pay for an abortion.
"She said, 'No, I'll never ask you for anything. I'll stay out of your life,'" Moats said. "And she did that until him and his wife kept coming for Billy."
Wolfe's court-appointed attorney did not immediately respond to a voicemail a KATU reporter left seeking comment Monday afternoon.