It’s been nearly two decades since actress and former Scientologist, Leah Remini, has been looking for Shelly Miscavige, the missing wife (and First Lady) of the Church of Scientology’s de facto leader, David Miscavige. She’s dedicated entire episodes of her A&E series to her investigation, mentioned it innumerable times in the press, and even confronted church officials with questions at Tom Cruise’s 2006 wedding to Katie Holmes. Now, via viral thread on Twitter, Remini has detailed a new development in one of Scientology’s most talked-about coverups.
When Remini left the church, she said her “first goal” was to find her missing friend. “In 2013, after I left Scientology, I filed a missing person’s report with the LAPD on Shelly,” Remini began. “By the time I filed the report, it had been nearly eight years since I had seen or heard from Shelly.” She recalls being told she “didn’t have the rank” to ask about Shelly, when Remini inquired as to why she wasn’t present at Cruise’s wedding. “Shelly was always with her husband. She was his shadow, not only because she was married to him but also because she was his top aide. For her not to be in attendance was not only unusual but also unimaginable.”
Mere hours after filing the report, Remini said she found out the case had already been closed via the press, and the LAPD was uncooperative when she prompted them for further information. “When I asked if detectives had spoken to or had seen Shelly themselves, I was told that was “classified” by the LAPD,” she tweeted. “I was told to file a public record request if I wanted further information. I spent $50k in attorneys fees filing various requests. My requests for information from the LAPD were shut down. I still don’t know anything about the circumstances of this investigation,” she continued.
The most unsettling detail in the thread, however, is Remini’s memory of meeting with LAPD veteran Cory Palka. If the name sounds familiar, it’s because Palka is currently being investigated for his close (read: entirely inappropriate and deeply suspect) relationship with CBS and its besmirched CEO, Les Moonves. Palka is alleged to have colluded with Moonves and other executives in fighting a former employee’s accusations that Moonves had sexually assaulted her. As Jezebel reported:
“I was so alarmed by Cory’s closeness with Scientology I even offered to personally double any donations they made to LAPD charities if he wouldn’t accept donations from them,” she remembered. “Cory was incredibly dismissive.”
In emails obtained by journalist, Tony Ortega, Palka maintained friendly correspondence with Scientology officials, even assigning a detective to work with the institution specifically and offering to introduce them to the Detroit Chief of Police. Additionally, LAPD Lieutenant Andre Dawson, who was put in charge of Remini’s report, spoke at a Scientology event about human trafficking. “You can’t make it up!” Remini wrote. She ends the thread by calling for an investigation of Palka’s and the LAPD’s ties to the church. “WHERE IS SHELLY???” Remini concludes.
David Miscavige has not addressed his wife’s abrupt departure from public life, but Scientology spokespeople have commented on a number of stories about the matter. In 2013, a church spokesperson told People: “She is not a public figure and we ask that her privacy be respected.” Of Remini’s missing person’s report, the spokesperson said it was “nothing more than [a] publicity stunt for Ms. Remini, cooked up with unemployed anti-zealots.” Five years later, a church attorney told the Daily Beast that he’d personally met with her. Shelly was last seen in 2005.