Kevin Esterly’s wife Stacey said she has had concerns about the 45-year-old’s relationship with Amy Yu for months. He is being held in a Pennsylvania jail on $500,000 after being extradited from Miami
The wife of the man who fled to Mexico with a 16-year-old girl has spoken out with her side of the story, and said she knew of her husband’s fascination with the teenager.
Kevin Esterly’s wife Stacey said she has had concerns about the 45-year-old’s relationship with Amy Yu for months.
Esterly arrived back in Allentown, Pennsylvania on Saturday after being extradited from Miami, the Lehigh County District Attorney’s office said.
He and Yu were tracked down together in Playa del Carmen on March 17 and then flown to Mexico. They had been missing since March 5. His bail has been set at $500,000 and he is due in court on April 2.
And though Stacey was concerned, she said she ‘never had any inkling it would lead up to this’.
Yu grew close to the Esterly family and went on ski and beach vacations with the couple and their daughters.
‘I did reach out to her mother, just saying I didn’t want [her] around as much, around my family and my children,’ she told ABC 6.
‘We thought the communication had stopped.’
Scorned wife: Though Stacey was concerned, she said she ‘never had any inkling it would lead up to this’
‘It got to the point in December, I had found out that he had rented an apartment four blocks away from [the teen’s] house,’ she said. Yu grew close to the Esterly family and went on ski and beach vacations with the couple and their daughters
She said she believed her husband when he told her nothing was happening between he and the teenager, and believed she would never do anything to harm either she or the couple’s four daughters.
‘But it got to the point in December, I had found out that he had rented an apartment four blocks away from [the teen’s] house,’ she said.
According to police, Esterly had been checking Yu out of school without her parents knowledge for months.
Stacey said she knew about this – but explains she was shocked she when she found out.
‘There were several times I found out that my husband Kevin had signed her out of school with no permission… I was very upset that the school would allow somebody to sign a child out of the school,’ she told the news station.
‘I guess it was alleged that he was her stepfather which in any means is not true.
‘He has four daughters of his own and a wife. And [she] is no stepchild.’
Stacey said she saw her husband the morning he went missing, and that he told her he’d see her when she got home from work.
‘I kissed him goodbye. He said, “Have a great day at work. I’ll see you when you get home,'” she said.
‘That was the last time I’ve seen him.’
Stacey said she now plans to divorce her husband.
According to police, Esterly had been checking Yu out of school without her parents knowledge for months. Stacey (pictured) said she knew about this – but explains she was shocked she when she found out
Esterly’s wife Stacey told cops he took $4,000 from their accounts before fleeing
Amy changed school documents to list Esterly as her step-father, and he signed her out of school 10 times between November 13 and February 9. They are pictured with his daughters
Esterly now faces a felony charge of interference with the custody of a child, which would require him to register as a sex offender for 15 years if convicted.
Authorities may opt to bring further charges upon the investigation, but the age of consent is 16 in Pennsylvania, and Mexican federal law sets the age of consent at 12.
However, if he gave Yu alcohol that could open up additional charges of corrupting the morals of a minor or endangering the welfare of a child, experts said.
Esterly and Yu first met at church years ago, because the teen is friends with one of the man’s daughters.
THey got so close that she went on their family vacations and Esterly came over to Amy’s family’s home for meals, her mother Mia Luu said.
The teen even changed school documents to list the older man as her step-father, and he signed her out of school 10 times between November 13 and February 9, police explained.
Amy’s mother discovered the deception when she came to get the girl from school on February 9 and found that Esterly had already signed her out. The furious mom warned him to stay away from the teen.
Before fleeing town with the girl, Esterly withdrew $4,000 from his join bank accounts with wife Stacey, she told police.
Mexican police are seen taking Esterly into custody in Playa del Carmen. From there US Marshals transported him to Miami
‘I’d like to go back to Pennsylvania as soon as possible’ Esterly told a Miami judge a week ago
Luu discovered after her daughter vanished on March 5 that she had taken some of jewelry, her passport and cash.
When the pair disappeared, police were immediately suspicious. A warrant for Esterly’s arrest was issued on March 7.
Cops tracked the pair to Mexico and issued an Amber Alert there on March 15. Two days later, Esterly and Yu were located near the resort Island of Cozumel.
Esterly was transported by US Marshals to Miami and waived his right to contest hs extradition.
Since he arrived in Florida, Esterly has been trying to call his wife Stacey – but she has refused all of his calls, her attorney told CBS News.
‘Stacey is happy that Amy is home and that Kevin is in custody,’ attorney John Waldron said in a statement.