The mother of murdered schoolteacher Rachael DelTondo has revealed that the teenage boy she was found in a ‘steamed up’ car with two years ago had developed an ‘obsession’ with her daughter.
In an exclusive interview, Lisa DelTondo, 64, revealed that Sheldon Jeter Jr, now 20, had called her last year, professing his love for Rachael and saying he wanted to marry her.
‘He told me he wanted to marry her [Rachael],’ Lisa said. ‘I said go back to college, have fun, there’s a lot of girls.
‘I told him, “Rachael is not marrying anybody yet alone you”. He had a dream world in his head about him and her.’
Police have executed multiple search warrants on Sheldon Jeter Jr, although no arrests have been made in the case and no suspects have been named by authorities.
The mother of murdered schoolteacher Rachael DelTondo Sheldon Jeter Jr, now 20, had developed an ‘obsession’ with her daughter
DelTondo, 33, had been seeing Rashawn Bolton (left), 31, for about six months. Her murder came six months after she was suspended from her job when a 2016 police report was leaked, revealing she had been found in a parked car with Bolton’s brother, Sheldon Jeter Jr (right)
Lisa DelTondo, 64, revealed that Sheldon Jeter Jr, now 20, had called her last year, professing his love for Rachael and saying he wanted to marry her
The grieving mother said her daughter never had a sexual relationship with Jeter Jr.
‘What this whole thing for a year and a half has been about is false gossip, that is what it has been,’ Lisa said.
Lisa said Sheldon was persistent in his desire to be near her daughter – who was dating Sheldon’s brother, Rashawn Bolton, at the time of her death.
Minutes before she was shot, she had been dropped off by a female friend after going to get ice-cream with her and another Jeter brother, Tyrie, 26.
‘This kid [Sheldon] had a definite obsession with Rachael,’ Lisa told DailyMail.com and the BeaverCountian.
‘She kept talking to him because she was trying to peel that bad s**t off of her and get to something that resembled normal.’
Rachael DelTondo, 33, was gunned down on May 13 at point-blank range on the driveway of her parents’ home, where she was living, in Aliquippa, Pennsylvania.
Sheldon Jeter Jr.’s attorney, Michael Santicola, said the relationship between his client and Rachael was one based not on love but on sex.
Santicola told the BeaverCountian: ‘How can someone that young really be in love with someone that old in a relationship that started in the fashion that it did.’
Rachael DelTondo’s friends told the Beaver Countian that she worked for a year in 2008 as a permanent substitute teacher in the Aliquippa School District teaching second and third grade.
Her mother said it was there she first encountered Sheldon, then an elementary student.
‘She never had him as her own student, that was another lie,’ she said. ‘He was one of a group of boys there whose teacher used to say, “If you’re good today you can go down the hall to see Miss D. after class”.
‘They thought she was beautiful because she was.’
DelTondo (pictured) was standing on her mother’s Buchanan Street driveway, in Aliquippa, Beaver County, on Sunday when she was killed in a hail of gunfire
DelTondo’s murder came six months after she was suspended from her job when a February 2016 police report was leaked, revealing she had been found in a parked car with Jeter Jr (center)
In February 2016, Rachael DelTondo was found in a car with then 17-year-old Sheldon, who was reclined in the passenger seat, in woods near Aliquippa.
According to the police report, ‘the windows were steamed over and the engine was not running’.
Rachael told Aliquippa police officers that Jeter Jr needed someone to talk to and begged them not to tell her fiancé, millionaire businessman Frank Catroppa.
Details of the teacher’s late-night meet-up with the teen were made public after a police report about the incident was leaked to her school and several news outlets in October 2017. She was suspended with pay at the time of her death.
Lisa DelTondo also expressed her anger at the Aliquippa Police Department for not doing enough to protect her from the death threats she had been receiving following the leaked police report.
The 64-year-old told the BeaverCountian that she also believes possible department corruption led to the leak – and put her daughter in the difficult position of cooperating with state police investigating city corruption.
The mother said: ‘She was afraid of the Aliquippa police. We knew it was dirty. That police department has been dirty for 50 years. That night my baby was laying on concrete, I called them all out.’
She added: ‘She went to police two times because of death threats. I had threats here at my house. I called the Aliquippa police, the detective called me four days later. Four days!
‘We could have been dead and rotting. They never followed up, nothing … She was afraid of whoever was sending the death threats, but no one ever found out who they were.
‘She [Rachael] was scared. She was scared of everyone. She was a scared rabbit.’
The mother said that after the leaked police report, Rachael had agreed to cooperate with state law enforcement agencies that were conducting investigations into public corruption.
She met with them on three occasions but her daughter’s fears kept her from speaking about all that she knew.
DelTondo’s engagement to Frank Catroppa was called off a few months after she was caught in a steamed up car with a teenage boy. Catroppa said he hopes there is justice for DelTondo, who he dated for eight years
The 33-year-old and her friends drove to get ice cream and was dropped back off at her parents’ home (pictured) at 10.44pm, and reports of gunshots were made four minutes later
Lisa told the BeaverCountian: ‘She knew a lot more. She was worried.’
Lisa DelTondo said her daughter was dating Sheldon’s older brother, Rashawn Bolton.
According to police reports, viewed by DailyMail.com and the BeaverCountian, Rachael and Rashawn, 31, began dating in December 2017.
She told the Beaver Countian she began receiving death threats around this time.
She said: ‘(Rashawn) was a strong muscular guy. I think when she went out she felt that she could not worry.’
Santicola said that Sheldon enjoyed being around Rachael but believes her mother has a wrong interpretation about what that meant.
The attorney said: ‘Obsessed is probably the wrong word. She [Rachael] was a frequent flyer for a lot of guys, so of course that’s what he liked.
‘What other things do teenage boys like? A pretty older girl who will have sex with them […] He has never said to me that he loved her but he cared enough about her to not press charges against her back in December when the state police wanted him to.
Lisa DelTondo and her husband, Joseph, 75, held a private burial for their daughter last Thursday.
‘I don’t care about anything, I really don’t. She’s gone, nothing will bring my baby back, nothing. She was a good person, she didn’t deserve to die this way.’
She added: ‘She looked very angry in the coffin. She always had a big white toothy smile on her face in life, so to see her look that angry was very hard. Very hard.’
Following his girlfriend’s murder, Beaver County detectives met with Rashawn Bolton on May 16. According to the affidavit, Bolton told police that he was in a ‘serious relationship’ with DelTondo dating back to December 2017.
Searched: Cops were seen leaving the home of Sheldon Jeter Jr with brown bags after their search. They also had a warrant for his phone records
An affidavit shows DelTondo when to Circle K convenience store (pictured), visited a friend, and returned to her parents’ home before picking up Tyrie Jeter
He told police that his girlfriend was feeling scared and she was being followed.
Bolton said that in summer 2017, he called his brother Sheldon and asked him if he was in a sexual relationship with DelTondo. Sheldon apparently responded, ‘why you calling me bro you never call, you weird as f***’.
Bolton then told police that he was in front of his home with DelTondo three months ago when Sheldon pulled up in his car and then took off. Bolton said he called Sheldon and said if he had a problem he was to talk to him about it.
Sheldon Jeter then returned and pulled his silver Nissan in behind DelTondo’s car, got out and approached them, saying: ‘that b***h told me she was with Amy.’
Sheldon Jeter then turned to DelTondo and said: ‘If my brother wasn’t here I’d f*** you up.’
Attorney Santicola said that his client had nothing to do with the harm that came to Rachael and denied that jealousy could have been a motive.
He said: ‘None of these scenarios indicate he ever had any intent to harm her. He knew she was engaged back when they got caught in the car, he wasn’t jealous about that.’
Sometime before 2010, Rachael DelTondo began a relationship with Frank Catroppa, known locally as ‘The Wolf of Aliquippa’, and they were together for around eight years. Her friends said it was an ‘on-off’ relationship.
They got engaged in Paris in June 2015 but the wedding plans were informally ended in October 2015. They officially broke up on Valentine’s Day 2016, when Rachael returned her engagement ring to Catroppa. The pair remained friends.
Catroppa told KDKA-TV: ‘When you’re with somebody for eight years, that’s quite some time, you just hope to see that they at least get justice. It’s a sad, sad case.’
His attorney, Stephen Colafella added: ‘We wanted to be very, very clear publicly that Frank Catroppa has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with what happened.’