When a child dies unexpectedly and violently the impact on the family is one of complete devastation. Anguish and despair become your close companions. It’s a heartbreak like no other.
Since the suspicious death of my twenty-year-old son Kyle on February 16, 2007, I’ve been trying to discover what really happened that evening. Kyle passed away in the apartment of his Scientologist father, Tom Brennan, in Clearwater, Florida, site of the headquarters of the Church of Scientology.
The Clearwater police claimed Kyle’s death was a suicide. All of the actual evidence, however—or rather the conspicuous lack of evidence—leads to another conclusion. What evidence was lacking? My son’s fingerprints weren’t on the weapon. In fact, there were no fingerprints on the weapon. Kyle’s hands were tested for gunshot residue—a GSR test—but the lead investigator blocked the test from being processed. Additionally, the bullet that ended my son’s life was never found. Without fingerprints on the weapon, without the GSR test results, and without the bullet, it’s impossible to know for certain who pulled the trigger. Without that evidence, it’s also impossible to say that the weapon found at the crime scene was the actual weapon used.
The investigation into Kyle’s death conducted by Detective Stephen Bohling was riddled with conflicts of interest and mishandled police procedures. Bohling’s subsequent police report is full of half-truths and outright lies. Facts critical to the case were omitted.
In 2012 I had an expert criminologist analyze Detective Bohling’s work, how the investigation was conducted and the conclusions that can be drawn from his police report. He concluded that Bohling’s investigation was a farce. He noted that, because of Bohling’s seemingly purposeful mishandling of the case, and the myriad sophomoric lies told by the defendants—obvious lies that were unquestioned, unpursued by the police—“it is evident that there is a connection between the Church of Scientology and the Clearwater Police Department.”
The Clearwater Police Department’s investigation into my son’s death was a travesty of justice. Of that, there is no question. Also indisputable is the criminality of Tom Brennan and two of the other defendants: Gerald Gentile and Denise Miscavige Gentile (the twin sister of the Church of Scientology’s leader, David Miscavige). These three miscreants lied to police officials, gave incorrect and false information, tampered with evidence, and committed perjury.
My son Kyle deserves to have his day in court. To this day, the combined efforts of the Church of Scientology and the Clearwater Police Department have succeeded in silencing anyone speaking up on his behalf. Every day that passes, my heart breaks anew over my son’s sad fate, and especially the shabby treatment he received at the hands of those sworn to “serve and protect.” There needs to be accountability for those who believe they’re above the rule of law.
It is my hope that someone with new information pertaining to the events of February 16, 2007, will step forward. If someone has information—no matter how trivial—pertaining to Kyle or the above defendants, please contact me. What you know could make a huge difference.
Inside Charlottesville with Coy Barefoot
ORIGINAL BROADCAST DATE: Tuesday, May 12, 2015.
Inside Charlottesville with Coy Barefoot is a news-talk-and-ideas program that originates from Charlottesville, Virginia. A veteran journalist, speaker, best-selling author and historian, Coy Barefoot is the program’s creator, host, and Executive Producer. Coy teaches history at the University of Virginia and serves as the President and Executive Director of the Virginia History Lab.
If you have any questions contact Victoria at: vbreton2062 (at) gmail.com.
(For more information regarding the highly questionable events surrounding Kyle’s death, the extremely mishandled police investigation, and the perjured testimony given by the defendants please refer to “The Truth for Kyle Brennan” blog at vbreton2062.wordpress.com.)