Woman charged in connection to Murrells Inlet death in court
Hubert Clodfelter’s daughters hadn’t talked to their dad in two years, and a search for his whereabouts led them to the 85-year-old’s beach house in the Myrtle Beach Travel Park.
“I found Dad stuffed in garbage bags,” Linda said at a bond hearing for her stepmother, who’s accused of hiding his remains. “I felt his dead flesh on my hands and I realized he is never coming back to us.”
Hubert’s wife, Irene Clodfelter, faces a host of charges in Georgetown and Horry counties in connection to her husband’s disappearance. Irene and Hubert were married for the last 15 years and lived in Murrells Inlet. Hubert ran a 30-unit mobile home park and owned a beach house about 45 minutes north in Myrtle Beach.
Hubert’s daughters, Linda and Karen (whose last names weren’t immediately available), were from his first marriage and not biologically related to Irene. Both daughters spoke at Irene Clodfelter’s bond hearing on Tuesday.
Irene Clodfelter was charged with two counts of obstruction of justice in Georgetown County and accessory to murder and desecration of human remains in Horry County. She faces a total $250,000 bond for the four charges.
Linda and Karen’s statements, along with arrest warrants, paint the most detailed picture of Hubert Clodfelter’s disappearance and killing.
For months Karen said they tried to contact Hubert Clodfelter, but Irene Clodfelter would always respond that he wasn’t around or didn’t want to speak to his family. Karen sent birthday cards, letters and Christmas gifts and hoped Hubert Clodfelter would see them.
“I begged her, and I begged her, and I begged her,” Karen said, “please have Dad call us. Please have Dad call us.”
One of the last lies Irene Clodfelter told was that Hubert Clodfelter was wanted by police as part of an undercover operation, Karen said. Karen believes this was to shame the daughters so they wouldn’t want to talk to him.
“The deception and the lies and the falsehoods she told us were hurtful,” Karen said.
After the months-long lies from Irene Clodfelter, the sisters said they eventually decided to travel to the Grand Strand to speak to their father.
Karen filed a missing person report with the Georgetown County Sheriff’s Office in March, but authorities did not ask for help in locating Hubert until June 14.
Unbeknownst to the public, that was also the same day the remains believed to be Hubert were found at the travel park off Kings Road. Chief Deputy Solicitor Scott Hixson said DNA testing is pending on the remains to confirm they are Hubert Clodfelter.
Officials have not revealed how Hubert died.
Irene Clodfelter told police she found Hubert’s remains under the beach house on May 28, according to arrest warrants. She placed his body in a plastic bag and taped it closed, officials said.
The warrants reveal Irene confessed to the concealment and said her son, who is believed to have died months ago, was responsible. Irene Clodfelter continued to receive money from Hubert Clodfelter’s businesses to support her lifestyle, according to the warrants.
Irene Clodfelter’s defense attorney John Hillard said they plan a vigorous defense in the case. They also will not help police further their investigation. The sisters believe Irene Clodfelter will continue to be untruthful, and Karen described her stepmother as a “pathological liar.”
Linda said she is fearful that Irene Clodfelter will kill her or pay someone to commit murder. At night, Linda is haunted by the smell and sight of her father’s remains.
“No one, no one, deserves to rot in a garbage bag with his wife above him enjoying his life,” Linda said.
Hubert Clodfelter was a vibrant man in his 80s, who drove an RV, and spent time with his relatives, Karen said.
“I will never be able to have my father again,” Karen said.” I will never hear my dad say ‘I love you and God loves you.’”