Zelich's former girlfriend shares shocking information: "He kept a girl for 7 years in his apartment in this crate"



MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- A woman who knows Steven Zelich very well, tells FOX6 shocking information about their time together. She Skyped from her Michigan home, and the information she shared is so disturbing,  that she says she secretly moved out and eventually left town because of what she discovered.

The shock Jamie Bates feels is more than the average person reading about the alleged lifestyle of Steven Zelich. She was his roommate in 2006 and 2007.

"Shock. I still can't believe it's him," said Bates. "He was always really, really nice. He never raised his voice to me, laid a hand on me or my kids."

The two met on a bondage website, however, Bates says she discovered Zelich was extreme. In the beginning there was a romantic relationship, but they soon became just friends and roommates.

"I remember snooping around after I had moved in with him and seeing stuff in his basement," explains Bates. "I seen a crate for a dog, one of the big wire crates, and some weird bondage contraptions."

Bates says she never discussed the discoveries with Zelich.

"It was really overwhelming, and it was hard to approach that kind of stuff with him, so I never really did," said Bates.

She says Zelich was a good friend who was nice to her young children, they family cat, and the dog. He would send her flowers, but she later would get more information.

"Towards the end when I was going to move out, he had said he kept a girl for seven years in his apartment, in this crate, this cage. He said he would leave her in there during the day when he went to work as a police officer, and he would come home on lunch and check in on her," said Bates.

Bates says she started secretly planning to move out.

"I had my children there around him, to think we all could have been victims," said Bates.

At the end of August 2007 Bates says she waited for Zelich to go to work. That's when she got a Uhaul and left.

"I can't stop shaking. I can't eat. It's been really difficult," said Bates.

She says she wonders what happened to the girl Zelich allegedly told her he kept as a slave for seven years.

"I'm really, truly, scared that they're going to find more," said Bates.

Bates says Zelich tried contacting her twice after she moved out, but she didn't pick up the phone and hasn't talked to him since.