Saturday September 18, 2021

updated - September 18, 2021 Saturday EDT

Socialite Jill Kelley Stripped Off VIP Pass to Military Base

Nov 14, 2012 08:16 PM EST | By Staff Reporter

Jill Kelley, the Tampa socialite who found herself at the center of the Petraeus scandal, has seen her VIP pass to visiting MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa revoked.

Kelly was known for her parties for members of the military in Tampa.

But unless you held the rank of general or admiral, you weren't likely on the guest list, according to one retired senior officer who didn't want his name published.

"A colonel is about as low as she'd go," said the officer, who served at the U.S. military's Central Command (CENTCOM) in Tampa and knows the players in the Petraeus scandal.

Nearly all lines in the increasingly tangled scandal involving Petraeus lead back to Kelley, whose complaint about anonymous, threatening e-mails triggered the FBI investigation that led to the former general's downfall as director of the CIA. And now Kelley is the center of an investigation of the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan over possible "inappropriate communications" between the two.

Tuesday, Kelley's pass to go on MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, home to CENTCOM, was revoked because of the investigation. Called a "Friends of MacDill" pass that allows easier access to the base, the first one was issued to Kelley in November 2010 after she submitted information, including her Social Security number, for a background check.

Over the last few days Kelley has called police several times, trying to invoke purported "diplomatic protection" to keep the media and public away from her Tampa home -- even though she has no official title or standing.

"You know, I don't know if by any chance, because I'm an honorary consul general, so I have inviolability, so they should not be able to cross my property. I don't know if you want to get diplomatic protection involved as well," Kelley told a 911 dispatcher, who agreed to pass the information along to police.

In three other calls to police on Monday, a caller identified herself as Jill Kelley and reported trespassers on her property.

"They're trying to push the door open; they won't leave," she says in one call.

"Are you sure you don't know who these people are?" the dispatcher asks.

"I do not know who they are, no," she responds.

Foreign Policy reports that the 37-year-old Kelley is an "honorary consul" to South Korea -- a title described as symbolic, with no official responsibilities.
According to the senior officer, Kelley and her husband, Scott, provided a sort of venue where high-ranking members of the military could be entertained.

At one party, held on the front lawn adjacent to bustling Bayshore Blvd., foreign officers outnumbered U.S. military about 10 to 1 as they mingled with the mayor and other local dignitaries, he said. There was a band, speakers and cocktails. The French and Italian officers seemed to enjoy themselves greatly, he said.

"The opportunity to rub shoulders just doesn't happen on the base," he said.

Much of the entertaining was done with her surgeon husband, Scott, at their bayside home a few miles from base.

Kelley's hosting of events to honor the military continued up until the very moment her name became public. News of her role in the Petraeus scandal broke as she was hosting an afternoon event at her house that included Vice Admiral Robert Harward, CENTCOM's Deputy Commander, as a guest.

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