‘Wife-Killer’ Was Living Secret Life In Months Prior To Arrest

Rod Covlin was living a secret life complete with a new job and a false name and LinkedIn page in the months before his arrest this week in the Upper West Side bathtub murder of his beautiful wife.

But as Covlin kept up his ruse, calling himself “Rod Sommer” and getting a job as head loan collector at a downtown financial company, the murder suspect was coming apart at the seams reeking of booze, living out of a hotel room and prone to furious outbursts.

“This guy is a f–king psychopath. He is out of his bird,” said a disgusted former co-worker at Pearl Capital on Exchange Place in lower Manhattan, where Covlin worked for at least half of this year.

The former co-worker, who has asked not to be named, said he quit after just three weeks of working with Covlin, 42, and was hardly surprised by news accounts of his arrest in the 2009 murder of his wife, Shele Danishefsky Covlin, 47.

Covlin would come to work at dawn and leave well after dark, as if afraid to be seen.

Actually, there was one surprise. Covlin had kept his first name but had assumed the last name of a former girlfriend, Julia Sommer, a help-desk worker at a Manhattan law firm whom Covlin had met through the New York City Backgammon group at around the time of the murder, a mutual friend told The Post.

Covlin’s still-current LinkedIn page says he worked at Pearl from February 2015 until “Present,” and listed no other job experience despite years as a failed stock trader.

Alias or no, the former co-worker had no trouble recognizing Covlin’s face in news accounts.

“Sometimes he’d come nose-to-nose with me,” said the former co-worker. “Whenever he was in my face, he reeked of liquor . . . There was always alcohol on his breath — early in the morning, all day, in fact.”

Covlin’s job? He was the “collections manager.”

“In one case, this man said he had cancer and couldn’t pay the loan immediately,” the former co-worker remembered. “Rod was furious. He had no compassion. He would say, ‘I don’t give a f–k if he has cancer. I want the money.’ ”

Officials at Pearl Capital did not return calls requesting comment.

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