Patricia held Ted’s hand in the hall, vowing “only death will separate us.” No one expected the husband to be behind the shooting and then set fire to the house creating a fake scene.
Ted and Patricia Kimble
Patricia Gail Blakley lost faith in love after her parents’ divorce. But everything changed when she got to know Ted Kimble, the son of a preacher. Shortly after their one-year anniversary, Ted proposed to Patricia and she gleefully approved.
On May 7, 1994, Patricia happily held Ted’s hand in the church hall, unaware of her soon-to-be evil-minded husband.
On the evening of October 9, 1995, Tricia (Patricia’s sister-in-law) rushed to Ted and Patricia’s house when she heard of the fire. At this time, there is smoke and flames, firefighters and emergency personnel are rushing to fight the fire and search for victims.
Suddenly, a firefighter shouted, “There’s a body here.” It was Patricia’s body. Through an autopsy, investigators determined Patricia was dead before the fire. She was killed by a gunshot wound to the back of the head.
Her husband had an alibi because he was working at the time. Her parents, brother and sister-in-law are devastated by this loss, and they also have evidence that they are not involved.
Patricia’s brother-in-law, Ronnie Lee Kimble, served in the military but went home on leave. He testified that he was at his brother’s shop at the time of Patricia’s death.
Detectives found no further evidence. The murder came to a standstill.
The investigation progressed when police received a phone call to a crime hotline in Greensboro, North Carolina. An unnamed young woman told detectives that a few days ago, Patricia Kimble confided that she was afraid her husband would kill her.
The woman said that Ted forged Patricia’s signature on her life insurance policy after she refused to sign it. The insurance agent also confirms this.
Then the police got information from another source. Working at the church where Ted and Patricia were married, he resented that Ted dated someone else just 10 days after his wife died. In addition, Ted’s cremation of Patricia’s body shocked the whole family, but he insisted on only following his wife’s wishes.
The statements were suspicious, but investigators knew there wasn’t enough evidence to convict. Ted has often dodged the police since his wife’s death. But after 2 phone calls, he was forced to cooperate. Admitted to forging his wife’s signature on his life insurance policy but Ted said he did so because he didn’t want to upset Patricia.
Later, the police found Ted’s younger brother Ronnie Lee Kimble. He was stationed at Camp Leejune, North Carolina. Strangely enough, to some questions regarding when and how to kill Patricia, Ronnie just muttered a preprogrammed answer: “Who wants to kill Patricia?”
Investigating further, the police learned that Ted had always been the beloved child in the house, and Ronnie was considered incompetent. Ted enjoyed manipulating Ronnie, and always made important decisions on his brother’s behalf.
Some time later, police received a call from an attorney in Lynchburg, Virginia. Upon arrival, they meet Mitch Wheeler (Ronnie’s teammate at Camp Leejune) and his wife.
One day, Ronnie offered to visit Mitch’s family and took his wife. During the conversation, his wife accidentally talked about how the police had contacted several relatives to investigate Patricia’s death.
Ronnie and Ted Kimble
Upon hearing this, Ronnie fell to the floor, screaming and kicking his feet like an angry child. Then Ronnie suddenly exclaimed, “I did it, Mitch. I killed her. It was I who killed Patricia.”
Shocked, Mitch asked, “Why did you do that, Ronnie?”
“Because my brother paid me for it,” Ronnie replied. Scared and unsure of what to do next, Mitch stayed up all night. He was relieved when Ronnie and his wife quietly left the next morning. At that time, he decided to report this to the police.
On April 1, 1997, nearly a year and a half after Patricia’s death, Ted Kimble was arrested, and Ronnie Kimble Jr. was arrested by military police at Camp Leejune.
In January 1998, Ted was charged with murder. But 1 week before sentencing, he tried to protest. In March 1998, the judge sentenced Ted to 107 years in prison. The man is being held at Scottish Prison in Laurinburg, North Carolina.
In August 1998, after a 6-week trial, Ronnie was convicted of murdering his sister-in-law and damaging property. He was sentenced to life in prison without parole and incarcerated at Nash Correctional Institution in Nashville, North Carolina.