Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Serial Killer Scott Lee Kimball


Scott Lee Kimball
Scott Lee Kimball
As Scott Lee Kimball languished inside a Montana prison during the early years of the new millennium, he bragged to his fellow inmates that he was a hit man, a tough-guy persona he may have adopted in part to elevate himself within the inmate hierarchy. For some reason, he also liked to call himself "Hannibal," after the serial killer character from the Thomas Harris novels. Although his hit man description was a stretch, Kimball did kill peopleespecially womenbut the authorities did not yet know that about him. Serving time on a variety of charges including theft, passing bad checks and forgery, Kimball nonetheless had hatched a plan to put him back on the streets.

His scheme included talking to the authorities about a murder-for-hire plot that involved his former cell mate, Steve Ennis, and that cell mate's mate's girlfriend, Jennifer Marcum, 25, of Denver, a stripper and the mother of a 4-year-old child who, police would learn, had befriended Kimball. At the time, the FBI was investigating a sizeable ecstasy operation in the Denver area, and Kimball assured investigators that he could join up with the drug ringleaders and provide information to the FBI. By December 2002, Kimball had convinced the FBI that he would make a good paid informant.

Jennifer Marcum
Jennifer Marcum
The FBI agreed, in part, to Kimball's proposal, becoming involved because of the possible murder-for-hire scenario. Marcum, it turned out, had been a potential witness in a Drug Enforcement Administration methamphetamine case against Ennis, and Ennis allegedly wanted another potential witness against him killed and made plans to use Marcum to get the job done. Before the year ended, Kimball's plan had worked, and he was back on the streets, minimally supervised.

Within a few months of Kimball's release, Jennifer Marcum disappeared. Then, between August 2003 and September 2004, Kimball's uncle, Terry Kimball, 60, disappeared, along with Kaysi McLeod, 19, of Lafayette, Colo., and LeAnn Emery, 24, of Aurora. Terry Kimball was originally from Georgia, but was believed to have been living with his nephew in Colorado at the time of his disappearance. Before the investigation of this twisted case was all over, authorities would learn that Scott Kimball had married Lori McLeod, the unsuspecting mother of Kaysi McLeod, in Las Vegas, Nev., shortly after getting out of prison, and the newlyweds then spent their honeymoon camping in the area where Kaysi's remains would eventually be found.


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