Published January 14, 2015
As police hunt for clues in the murder of a model whose burned body was found this week in Miami, her sister says she thinks the murder was random — not the work of a boyfriend or anyone else Paula Sladewski knew.
"I think someone wanted to rape her and then burned the evidence," the sister, Kelly Farris, told the Detroit Free Press. "Anyone who did this would be covered in scratches. My sister was a fighter."
North Miami police detectives have examined two surveillance videos that may show the California woman's last moments alive after leaving a Miami club Sunday, including one video produced by a lawyer for Sladewski's boyfriend, Kevin Klym. The lawyer says it shows Sladewski leaving the club with another man, but another video provided by the club seems to show her leaving alone.
In each video, the woman is hard to identify, police say, and neither video may help determine who killed Sladewski. Her badly burned body was found Sunday evening in a Dumpster in Miami, and results of an autopsy are pending.
Klym has been the target of suspicion, partly because an ex-boyfriend said Sladewski had been sending him text messages during the time she was dating Klym saying he was “trying to kill" her.
“She used to text me all the time in trouble asking for help,” ex-boyfriend David Coleman told FoxNews.com.
Coleman could not provide FoxNews.com with copies of the text messages because he said North Miami police detectives were using them as part of their investigation.
Coleman said the last time he heard from Sladewski, 26, who appeared in the video "Playboy: The Ultimate Playmate Search," was in a text message she sent him after midnight on New Year’s Eve. He said there was nothing alarming about her message and he said it didn’t make it seem like she was drunk.
Coleman, who lives in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., 10 minutes from the home of Sladewski and Klym, said he and Sladewski dated in the late 1990s and had remained close friends. “We always had each other’s backs,” Coleman said.
FoxNews.com found Coleman's name, meanwhile, on California's sex offenders registry for an unknown offense.
Coleman said there seemed to be a lot of drama in the Klym-Sladewski relationship. The latest incident involved Klym allegedly punching Sladewski and breaking her nose during an argument at a Michigan hotel while the couple was visiting her family. Sladewski was subpoenaed to testify last Monday in the case.
An assault charge against Sladewski, alleging she cracked a bottle over Klym’s head, was dropped last month.
FoxNews.com also learned that Klym reportedly was arrested in 2008 during a drug bust in Warren, Mich., in which he was charged with cocaine possession.
North Miami Police spokesman Lt. Neal Cuevas said Klym, 34, was the last known person to see Sladewski alive and remains a person of interest in their investigation.
Klym told police that he and Sladewski got into a verbal altercation at a Miami club, and said that body guards escorted him out and would not let him back into the club, said Cuevas.
Klym said he tried to get Sladewski to leave the club because he thought she was too drunk, setting off a heated argument that ended with his getting kicked out of the club. He said Sladewski didn’t want to leave and stayed inside, according to Cuevas.
Cuevas told FoxNews.com that police were able to confirm Klym’s account of when and how he got back to his Miami hotel from the club. Klym told police that he took a taxi back to his hotel.
Sladewski’s stepfather, Richard Watkins, who lives in Michigan with Sladewski's mother, told FoxNews.com that he wasn't surprised to hear that Sladewski's boyfriend was named a person of interest.
"They had a horrible relationship," said Watkins. "I have told them from the start that they shouldn’t be together."
The North Miami Police Department asks anyone with information to contact Crime Stoppers at 305-471-8477.
FoxNews.com's Ali Reed, Sky News, and MyFoxDetroit.com contributed to this report.