Murder charges filed against ex-boyfriend of Madeline Kingsbury
The ex-boyfriend of Madeline Kingsbury has been formally charged with two counts of second-degree murder. Adam Taylor Fravel, 29, was formally charged in Winona County court on Friday morning. His first appearance was held at 11 a.m., where a judge set his unconditional bail at $2 million, but $1 million with conditions.
A press conference was held on Friday afternoon. Winona County Attorney Karin Sonneman noted first-degree murder charges require a grand jury proceeding and said additional charges against Fravel are possible in the future.
“We have heard from so many individuals how wonderful a person Maddie was. She had a bright future and Mr. Fravel took that from her,” Winona County Attorney Karin Sonneman said. “By charging him today with her murder, we intend to hold him accountable to the fullest extent of the law.”
According to the complaint, a friend of Kingsbury’s told police around 8:20 p.m. on March 31 that Kingsbury and Fravel, who were living together, had been having issues. Police also looked inside the home from outside and didn’t see anyone. Family members also told police they hadn’t heard from Kingsbury, which was unusual.
Police then spoke with Fravel, who said he hadn’t heard from Kingsbury since that morning, and added she didn’t pick up their children, ages 5 and 2, at day care that morning like she was supposed to. Fravel claimed he picked the kids up and brought them to his parents’ home in Mabel.
A search warrant was authorized the next day, and officers searched the Kingsbury and Fravel home, located in Winona. Officers found Madeline’s phone, jacket and purse, but didn’t find any signs of a struggle. In her phone, police say a message was sent to her sister on the morning of March 31 at 8:15 a.m., but there weren’t any other messages or calls sent from the phone.
The document says Fravel told police he and Kingsbury had met at college in Winona and had been dating on and off throughout the past seven years. He added Kingsbury typically worked from home but would travel to work from Rochester on Mondays and Fridays. The complaint goes on to say Fravel said they were both working on moving out of the Winona home since their relationship wasn’t working at that time.
Fravel went on to say that both he and Madeline dropped their kids off at day care at around 8 a.m. on March 31 and that she was going to Rochester for work after an online meeting at home. He added that while Kingsbury was at work, he was going to do property storage runs between his parents’ home near Mabel and Midwest Storage in Winona. While driving toward Mabel, Fravel said he realized the items in the back of the van were supposed to be the storage unit and not his parents’ place, and turned around at a barn in Choice and drove back to Winona, where he stayed the rest of the day.
The complaint goes on to say Fravel texted Kingsbury but didn’t receive a reply, so he picked up their kids and drove them to Mabel.
Police say they spoke with at least two people who were concerned about Kingsbury’s relationship with Fravel, saying both the friend and the family member described incidents of seeing marks on Kingsbury’s face. The friend also told police she saw Fravel hit Kingsbury in the face during a video call.
The complaint says police searched two iPhones that they believed belonged to Madeline, where they found messages between her and Fravel that went back multiple years. The document specifies one exchange that happened on Sept. 21, 2021, where Kingsbury told Fravel she wasn’t “okay with or over the fact that you put your hand around my neck and pushed me down in front of the kids earlier so don’t,” and added, “Not okay with it all but especially with them there.”
In his response, the complaint says Fravel wrote, “You’ll adjust.”
The document also says police told Fravel about a report made by a concerned person, who claimed that Fravel had told Kingsbury that if she didn’t listen up, she would end up like Gabby Petito, a cross-country traveler. The remains of Petito, who went missing at the age of 22, were found in Wyoming after extensive searches were done.
As previously reported, Petito was killed by her boyfriend, Brian Laundrie, who admitted to doing so in a notebook found near his body in a Florida swamp.
When police told Fravel about this report, he admitted to making the statement but claimed he was trying to make a joke. He also said he was “infatuated” with the Petito case.
Police were able to find footage from motion detection video devices as well as security cameras at homes and businesses in the neighborhood where Fravel and Kingsbury lived, as well as the route Fravel said he used to take the morning of March 31. In those videos, police say they found Kingsbury’s van in the driveway of their Winona home at 9:44 but found a person kneeling in front of it and appearing to reinstall a license plate before it is no longer parked at the home at 10 a.m.
The van is then found at a gas station at 10:02, where Fravel is seen pumping gas in a light-colored jacket. Police also noted the person who was in front of the van at the home matched Fravel’s description and also had a light-colored jacket on.
They were able to then track the van traveling south on Highway 43 toward Rushford, Choice and Mabel until just before noon. At 12:44 p.m., the van is seen traveling north on Highway 43 in the direction of Rushford and Winona. It is then seen headed toward Winona on County 12 at 1 p.m. and is in the driveway at 1:28.
Police then traveled the route to make sure times match up, and except for the 45 minutes between he was spotted traveling south of Rushford on Highway 43 and at the same location traveling north on Highway 43, the travel times are normal.
As previously reported earlier this week, a deputy searched a rural area between Choice and Mabel about a mile off of Highway 43 on a public gravel road. The complaint says while searching the property, officers found the property was maintained by at least one member of the Fravel family and was near Fravel’s parents.
While searching the area, the complaint says the remains of Kingsbury were found in a fitted bed sheet that was closed with black “Gorilla” tape that matched a roll of tape found in the home Kingsbury and Fravel lived. The document adds the fitted sheet was missing from an air mattress at their home, and the air mattress had grey pillowcases.
A medical examiner’s office report says Kingsbury died from homicidal violence and had a knotted towel wrapped around her head and neck.
If Fravel is convicted, the maximum sentence for each count is 40 years behind bars.
This story is used with permission from KSTP – 5Eyewitness News.