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The Devastating Case of Kansas Moms Veronica Butler & Jillian Kelley

The Devastating Case of Kansas Moms Veronica Butler & Jillian Kelley: A Shocking Tale of Custody Battles and Murder

By Sally APublished about a month ago 6 min read


The shocking case of Veronica Butler and Jillian Kelley, two Kansas moms who tragically lost their lives, has gripped the nation. The details of their disappearance and the subsequent investigation reveal a harrowing story of custody battles, premeditated plots, and alleged murder orchestrated by a grandmother. This article delves into the intricate details of the case, the crimes committed, and the ongoing investigation.

The Victims: Veronica Butler and Jillian Kelley

Veronica Butler, a 27-year-old mother of two from Hugoton, Kansas, was adored by her friends and family. Despite her love and dedication, Veronica did not have custody of her children due to instability in her life, including frequent moves and an inability to maintain a stable job. She was embroiled in a bitter five-year custody battle with her ex, Wrangler Rickman, and was only allowed supervised visitation with her children on Saturdays. Determined to regain custody, Veronica had filed a petition for more visitation rights, with a hearing set for April 17th, 2024.

Jillian Kelley, a 39-year-old woman, was the wife of a pastor and also a mother. She served as a court-approved supervisor for Veronica's visitations. Jillian was involved in her community and church, and she accompanied Veronica on March 30th, 2024, to pick up her children for a scheduled visit. Tragically, neither of them made it to their destination.

The Disappearance

On March 30th, Veronica and Jillian left Hugoton to meet Tiffany Adams, the paternal grandmother, at an abandoned gas station in Eva, Oklahoma. When they did not show up, family members grew concerned and began searching for them. Veronica’s empty car was found abandoned on the side of the road, leading to a missing persons report being filed.

Authorities discovered evidence indicating foul play, including pools of red bodily fluid near the car, Veronica's glasses, and a broken hammer. The Oklahoma State Police took over the case, keeping many details close to the chest to avoid compromising the investigation.

The Arrests

On April 13th, 2024, a significant break in the case occurred with the arrest of four individuals: 54-year-old Tiffany Adams, 43-year-old Tad Coleman, 50-year-old Cora Twam, and 50-year-old Cole Twam. All were charged with first-degree murder, kidnapping, and conspiracy to commit murder. They were denied bail and became the prime suspects in the deaths of Veronica and Jillian.

The Investigation

The investigation revealed that Tiffany Adams, the grandmother, had orchestrated the events leading to the disappearance of Veronica and Jillian. Tiffany had requested the usual visitation supervisor to take time off, leading Veronica to ask Jillian to accompany her. Court documents showed that Tiffany searched for various items online, including tasers, gun shops, and prepaid cell phones, in the weeks leading up to the incident.

The Twams' 16-year-old daughter told investigators about a previous failed attempt on Veronica's life in February. She also revealed that the group had discussed their "mission" on the day of the disappearance and admitted to cleaning out their truck afterward, noting that things "didn't quite go as planned."

The Crime Scene and Confession

Tiffany Adams eventually admitted her responsibility in the deaths of Veronica and Jillian. The investigation uncovered that the group had a history of violent behavior and a disregard for human life. Tad Coleman, Tiffany’s boyfriend, was found with a rifle, ammunition, body armor, and a "go bag" at his residence when arrested. The group had previously plotted to kill Veronica by dropping a heavy steel object through her windshield.

Further details emerged that Tiffany and Tad had initially planned to stage a fatal accident by dropping a steel anvil onto Veronica's car. However, when this plot failed, they resorted to a more direct approach. The affidavits reveal that the group meticulously planned the abduction and murder of Veronica and Jillian, showcasing a disturbing level of premeditation.

The Discovery of the Bodies

On April 14th, 2024, after a two-day excavation in a cow pasture, the bodies of Veronica and Jillian were found buried 10 feet deep in a deep freezer. The Oklahoma State Police, assisted by various other agencies, worked tirelessly to locate the burial site and uncover the truth. The discovery of the bodies in such a grisly condition only heightened the horror of the crime and the evil intentions of the perpetrators.

The Aftermath and Legal Proceedings

During the suspects' arraignment hearings, emotions ran high, with family members of the victims expressing their anger and grief. The suspects were denied bail and remain in custody. A fifth suspect, 31-year-old Paul Greeley, was later arrested and charged with the same crimes. He admitted his involvement in the planning and execution of the murders.

Greeley's confession added another layer to the investigation. He revealed that he had been part of the earlier plots and had actively participated in the abduction and burial of the bodies. His detailed account provided crucial evidence that further implicated the group and confirmed the premeditated nature of the crime.

The Role of Tiffany Adams

Tiffany Adams' role as the mastermind behind the murders is particularly chilling. Motivated by a desire to control the custody of her grandchildren, she went to unimaginable lengths to eliminate Veronica, the biological mother. Tiffany's manipulative tactics included orchestrating a false sense of security by requesting the usual visitation supervisor to take time off, ensuring that Jillian, who was not regularly involved in the visits, would accompany Veronica.

Her meticulous planning, including online searches for tasers, gun shops, and prepaid cell phones, showcases the premeditated nature of the crime. Tiffany's confession to law enforcement, where she admitted her responsibility for the deaths, further solidified her role as the orchestrator of this heinous act.

The Impact on the Community

The brutal murders of Veronica and Jillian have left a profound impact on the community. Friends and family members of the victims are struggling to come to terms with the loss of their loved ones. The community, known for its close-knit and supportive environment, is now grappling with the reality that such evil acts could occur within their midst.

The case has also highlighted the need for better support systems for individuals involved in custody disputes. Veronica's struggle to regain custody of her children and the lengths she went to secure supervised visits underscore the complexities and emotional toll of custody battles. The involvement of Jillian, a pastor's wife who was merely trying to help a friend, adds another layer of tragedy to the story.

The Legal Battle Ahead

As the legal proceedings unfold, the families of Veronica and Jillian are hoping for justice. The suspects face serious charges, including first-degree murder, kidnapping, and conspiracy to commit murder. If convicted, they could face life sentences without the possibility of parole or even the death penalty.

The prosecution will likely focus on the premeditated nature of the crime, using the evidence gathered from the suspects' online searches, confessions, and the meticulous planning involved. The defense, on the other hand, may attempt to discredit the evidence or argue for lesser charges.

The trial will undoubtedly be a long and arduous process, but the families of the victims remain determined to see justice served. They continue to advocate for their loved ones and ensure that their memories are honored.


The devastating case of Veronica Butler and Jillian Kelley is a stark reminder of the lengths to which some individuals will go in custody disputes. The brutal murders orchestrated by Tiffany Adams and her accomplices have left a community in shock and six children without their mothers. The ongoing investigation and upcoming legal proceedings will hopefully bring justice for Veronica and Jillian and provide some measure of closure for their grieving families.

This tragic story underscores the importance of thorough and unbiased investigations and serves as a sobering example of how custody battles can escalate into unimaginable violence. It also highlights the need for better support systems and resources for individuals involved in such disputes to prevent future tragedies.

As the community mourns the loss of Veronica and Jillian, their story serves as a reminder of the need for vigilance, compassion, and justice in the face of unspeakable evil. The legacy of these two women will live on through the efforts of their families and the community to seek justice and ensure that their memories are never forgotten.


About the Creator

Sally A

Animal lover 🐾 | Health enthusiast 💪 | Self-development junkie 🌱 | Beauty explorer 💄 | True crimes & mystery enthusiast 🕵️‍♀️ | Let's journey together! 💫

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