WOMAN'S HUSBAND CHARGED
April 2, 1997
ROTHROCK Staff Writer
Nearly 18 months after Patricia Kimble was killed, officials charge
her husband and his brother with murdering her.
The husband and brother-in-law of slaying victim Patricia Kimble
were charged Tuesday with killing the young woman nearly 18 months
ago and setting her secluded home on fire to cover up the crime.
Brothers Ted and Ronnie Kimble face first-degree murder charges in
the death of Ted Kimble's 28-year-old wife, whose burned body was
found Oct. 9, 1995, in the hallway of her Pleasant Garden home. She
had been shot in the head.
Both brothers are being held without bond at the Guilford County
Detention Center in Greensboro. Officials at the jail feared Ted
Kimble might try to kill himself Tuesday night and would not allow
In the months after Patricia Kimble's death, suspicion swirled
around Ted Kimble, who steadfastly maintained his innocence and
repeatedly complained that investigators zeroed in on him as a
suspect, excluding other possibilities.
Kimble said he thought his wife walked in on a robbery because some
of her jewelry was missing. Saying he didn't trust local deputies to
find the person who killed his wife of two years, Ted Kimble, the
son of a local minister, offered $20,000 from his wife's insurance
policy as a reward for information about the murder.
"It's not innocent until proven guilty, but guilty until proven
innocent," Kimble said when he established the reward six weeks
after his wife's death. "Shoot, I feel like the guys are trying to
put me into the electric chair for something I didn't do."
Almost a year later, on the first anniversary of Patricia Kimble's
death, Ted Kimble ended the reward offer, saying he had not received
any insurance money because of the suspicions surrounding him.
Ted Kimble said he kept his wife's wedding portrait hanging on a
wall in his home and her ashes in a green urn on the dresser beside
a vase of fresh, red roses.
Investigators arrested Ted Kimble, 27, on Old Liberty Road about
7:45 a.m. Tuesday as he drove to work. Kimble owns Lyle's Building
Supplies on West Lee Street. Military police arrested his brother,
Ronnie Kimble, 25, at Camp Lejeune as the marine reported for work
Tuesday morning, Guilford Sheriff BJ Barnes said. Ronnie Kimble
worked in the chaplain's office.
As the sheriff discussed the Kimbles' arrests during an 11 a.m. news
conference, Patricia Kimble's family sat nearby. Her mother, Sheila
Blakley, sat with her back to reporters, sobbing.
The Blakley family declined to comment on the arrest of their former
Barnes said that Ted Kimble did not appear surprised when officers
in five cars pulled his car over and arrested him. "I think it is
something he expected," Barnes said.
The father of the two men arrested agreed. The Rev. Ronnie Kimble
said he has known for 18 months that his only two children were the
prime suspects in his daughter-in-law's death.
"We are a very close-knit family and we are going to stay together
and see this thing through," Ronnie Kimble said. "We don't believe
it because we know he (Ted) and his wife were very close." What made
this case difficult and unlike any other case detectives have
investigated, Barnes said, is the lack of cooperation by the Kimble
"He (Ted Kimble) never consented to a formal interview," Barnes
said. "That's one reason it took so long. Neither he nor his family
cooperated. You usually don't run into that type of thing."
The sheriff said that pieces of the puzzle that led to the arrests
came together slowly, but investigators are confident about their
case and expect to file more charges against the two men. The
charges concern insurance money, which amounts to more than
$100,000, Barnes said. No one piece of information led officers to
the brothers, according to Barnes. The $16,000 in reward money from
Crime Stoppers, the state of North Carolina and Patricia Kimble's
family will not be collected.
"No one thing put us over the edge," Barnes said. "A bunch of little
things came together over time. We put the pieces together until we
had a complete puzzle."
Barnes said that Ted Kimble had two legal handguns in his car when
they arrested him. Kimble's mother also was in the car with him,
Barnes said. The sheriff declined to discuss specifics of the case,
but said that neither of the two handguns found in Ted Kimble's car
was used in the killing. He would not say if deputies found the
murder weapon, believed to be a .45-caliber handgun.
By Tuesday afternoon, Patricia Kimble's friends and neighbors had
heard about the arrests. "I just pray that her family can go on
now," said Pleasant Garden resident Mary Ann McNabb. "I just pray
that it's over."
McNabb, co-owner of Southeast Supermarket, said she never feared for
her safety following the Kimble murder. "It never bothered me," she
said. "I always thought that it was something planned for Pat, and
not a threat to the rest of the community."
Jan Bottomley works at Cinnamon Ridge Apartments, where Patricia
Kimble worked as a manager. "I'm just kind of numb," she said. "I
guess I'm glad because I know it's a big step for the family and
everything. Pat was very sweet. She definitely had the gift of
giving. She was always doing things for other people."
Five months after their daughter died, Richard and Sheila Blakley
offered a $10,000 reward for information in the case. "I think about
her (Patricia) every hour," Sheila Blakley said at the time. "You
don't want to suspect anyone she knows, but you don't know what to
think. Your mind plays tricks on you. We hope and pray it was no one
- Staff writers Danielle Deaver and Rich McKay contributed to this
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