Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Serial Killer Scott Lee Kimball

LeAnn Emry

LeAnn Emry
LeAnn Emry
LeAnn Emry, 24, disappeared without a trace in January 2003 after checking out of a hotel in Colorado. Her mother and father, Howard and Darlene Emry, last saw LeAnn on January 16, 2003, when she packed her suitcases into her car for what was supposed to have been a spelunking expedition to Mexico. Exploring caves had been one of her favorite pastimes, and had seemingly helped her get through a short and unhappy marriage. Although she had faced difficulties with a bipolar disorder throughout much of her young life, her parents recalled being happy for her as she set off on the trip from which she would not return.

"Every weekend, every spare moment she had, LeAnn had been going caving, so this was not out of the ordinary," her father told a reporter for the Idaho Statesman.

Two weeks later, however, a sheriff's deputy from Moab, Utah, called her parents to report that her car had been found abandoned along a dirt road near Book Cliffs.

"When he told me was a shock," her father said. "I just felt sick to my stomach."

Although her parents filed a missing persons report in Arapahoe County, Colo., where they resided at the time, they were told that LeAnn was likely a runaway and that there was nothing to indicate foul play. As such, there would not be an investigation, unless a body was found, although her purse and some other belongings had been found inside her car. Her credit cards, however, were missing. With the help of banks and credit card companies, Howard and Darlene Emry were able to recreate a 10-day trail of gasoline charges that led through Colorado, Wyoming, Oregon, Washington, and Nevada. It was clear that she had not gone to Mexico, and her parents were left wondering whether she had made the charges to her cards of if someone else had done so. The main purchases made with them had been gasoline.

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