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Report, Brian. C. Yarborough:  Narrative of Crime Scene


Note:  Ted's handwritten notes on the report are included as footnotes.

 

Guilford County Sheriff's Department
Case Log Report
 

1. Incident Number:951009027
 

2. Identification Officer:b c yarborough
 

3. Requesting Officer:dispatch
 

4. Type of Case:homicide/arson
 

5. Notified Time/Date:2100 hrs/10-09-95
 

6. Arrival Time/Date:2130 hrs/10-09-95
 

7. Completion Time/Date:0800 hrs/10-10-95
 

8. Victim/Address:Patricia Gale Kimble/2104 Brandon Station Ct. Pleasant Garden
 

9. Duties Performed:
Photographs: B&W_yes Color yes Latent Lifts # 0
Composite: no
Handwipes: no
Crime Scene Sketch: no
Rape Kit: no
Other: (The following is a record of the
activities of unit #391, Brian C. Yarborough, while at the
scene at 2104 Brandon Station Ct.)
 

10. Narrative of Crime Scene:Around 2100 hrs. on 10-09-95, this Technician was dispatched to the scene of a reported Fire/Dead Body Investigation (DBI) at 2104 Brandon Station Ct. in Pleasant Garden. Upon arrival, coordinated with Officer L.D.Jones, G.C.S.D., who related that the residence had been on fire, the fire was now under control, and there was a body on the interior of the residence.

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3A

The residence on Brandon Station Ct. was a single level, single family style residence located in a rural portion of the county, within the Pleasant Garden Community. The residence was situated directly on Brandon Station Ct., which was a cul-de-sac that ran west off of Highway 22. The residence at 2104 was the only residence on the cul-de-sac, and was surrounded by a large wooded area to the front, rear, and all sides. Due to the placement of the residence on the cul-de-sac, and the trees and schrubs, the residence itself was almost totally obscured from neighboring residences on Highway 22 and the adjacent housing development.
 

Upon my arrival to the, I noticed numerous fire department personnel, vehicles, and equipment set up both on the street and in the yard of the residence. Officer Jones had arrived at the scene prior to this units arrival, and had set up an outer perimeter with the use of yellow barrier tape. The perimeter was set up in such a manner that fire department and law enforcement (essential) personnel and equipment could gain access to the residence, however, non-essential persons were not allowed access. Officer Jones related fire department personnel were called to the when a
relative came to the residence and noticed smoke coming from it. Officer Jones further related that as the fire department were bringing the fire under control, they discovered the remains of a body, at that time suspected to be that of the victim, Mrs. Patricia Kimble, located in what was left of the hallway of the residence. After being briefed on the status of the incident to this point, Officer Jones placed additional barrier tape around the perimeter of the residence, in an effort to further limit access of non-essential persons, who were beginning to gather in the front yard.
 

Once the additional perimeter was in place, I proceeded to the front portion of the residence to begin an evaluation of the scene. The exterior portion of the residence looked to be constructed mainly of wood or wood siding, blue in color. On the left side of the residence (if facing same) was a garage/carport. The side walls on the interior of the garage did not have paneling, the roof and entranceway into the garage were not completely finished, and the garage did not have a door in place, which indicated this portion of the residence was still under construction. The front door of the residence was constructed of wood. The lower portion of the front door been knocked out, prior to this units arrival, and presumablly by fire department personnel. There was what looked to be a large, possibly propane gas tank on the right side of the residence, which, according to fire department, had been disconnected.
 

Other than dark areas above and around the exterior of the windows of the residence, which indicated smoke damage,

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there was no serious fire damage to the exterior of the residence.
 

I then began to speak to various on scene personnel in a effort to gain insight on the condition of the interior of the residence and damage sustained to same. Officer Jones informed this unit that upon their initial entry into the residence, which, from this units understanding was made through a side door leading from the interior of the garage into the kitchen, fire department personnel discovered what appeared to be a gasoline can sitting on the floor of the kitchen. When I arrived, the red in color gasoline can was sitting in the front yard approximately twenty to thirty (20-30) feet from the front door of the residence. I then ascertained that Fireman Steve Wilson (No Further Info), one of the first fire personnel to enter the residence, noticed the gas can sitting in the floor of the kitchen. Feeling the can and its position could pose a threat of injury to other personnel, Wilson moved the can back out of his way. Fireman Brad Faulk (NFI) then picked the can up and moved it further out of the way of incoming fire personnel. Faulk handed the can to Fireman Todd Ross (NFI), who took the can out of the residence and handed it to the first deputy on the scene, which was Officer Jones. At this point, I collected the red in color gas can as evidence. The bottom of the can was somewhat charred and black, and the pour spout of the can was somewhat melted and pointing in a downward direction, which indicated an exposure to heat. I then placed additional barrier tape around a small cluster of three trees near the right side of the residence and formed a third inner barrier. I placed the collected gas can inside this perimeter, along with my camera bag and video equipment, making both "OFF LIMITS" to all other persons at the scene.
 

I then proceeded to take both black and white and color photographs depicting overall and mid-range of the following:
* a gray in color Subaru Legacy, NC registration EPL9771, VIN 4S3BC6326M9611135, parked in the driveway of the residence directly in front of the garage, on the left side of the residence (if facing). Photographs also depicted keys in the ignition of the vehicle, a brown in color pocketbook in between the passenger and drivers seats, along with a blue in color tank and a red in color milk-type crate containing various articles.
* the ccarport/garage and contents therein.
* the front of the residence. the rear of the residence.

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3C

* the gas can collected from the front of the residence.
 

I then proceeded into the residence. As stated prior, access was gained only through the garage/carport door, which allowed access into the kitchen/dining area. With ones back to the doorway, the kitchen was to the immediate front. There was a diningroom set to the right, and further to the right was the livingroom, which had sustained serious fire and smoke damage. The front door of the residence (which at the time of this units arrival was locked and could not be opened) opened into the livingroom. With ones back to the front door, there was a view of a portion of the kitchen, as well as the entire livingroom. Located approximately ten (10) feet from
the front door travelling towards the direction of the kitchen and to the immediate right was a hallway. There was a large hole in the floor of the hallway, and fire department personnel had placed a ladder over the hole to allow access into the rear portion of the residence. The entire hallway had sustained serious damage. On the side of the hallway was what looked to have been possibly a small area for a washer and dryer. Further down the hall and on the same side were two bedrooms. The first bedroom on initial observation looked almost undisturbed, sustaining almost no fire damage and very little visible smoke or water damage. The second bedroom on the right looked to have sustained slightly more fire and smoke damage, and looked to have been ransacked. The residences master bedroom was located on the left side of the hallway, directly across from the second bedroom. The master bedroom had sustained severe fire and smoke damage. Fire personnel
A stated entry was made into this room from the exterior through the rear window, and once entry was made, efforts were made to search for person(s) possibly trapped inside. In their efforts to find survivors, several, items, to include the bed, were moved from their original position,A however the room still beared signs of having been ransacked. All drawers from the dresser, chest and night stand had been pulled out and were either lying on the floor or hanging from the article of furniture. The bed had been over-turned, but it was not ascertained by this unit whether or not that occurred as a result of the ransacking or the fire departments efforts to locate survivors. Though clothes had been thrown onto the floor of the bedroom, presumably from the drawers, it is this units opinion that this was evident of either random ransacking or efforts made by suspects to make the room appear to have been ransacked. I came to this conclusion by observing positions of the clothes and drawers on the floor. Though they had been dumped out of the respective drawers, they did not seem to have been handled or disturbed, but rather simply dumped from the drawers. The second bedroom discussed, immediately across from the master bedroom, also had been "gone through", and, it, too, looked as though the contents of the drawers were simply

215

AThe fire department caused part of the damage to the rooms.


 

3D

dumped onto the floor in the same manner. In most cases of ransacking, the contents of the drawers, when gone through, are strewn about randomly. However, in this case, two of the drawers were taken out and even looked to have been placed on the floor, with the contents still intact.A
 

The body of the victim was discovered in the hallway of the residence. Scene indicated the floor of the hallway collapsed, probably from the intense heat of the fire, while the victim was lying on the floor. When discovered, the body was lying face down among the rubble of the collapsed floor, in the hole which had been created, head in the direction of the master bedroom (if one's back is to the livingroom, facing the hallway). The head and neck of the victim was bent back and slightly
in an upward position. The left arm was bent at the elbow at a 90 degree angle, and the left hand was at the left temple. The right arm of the victim was also bent at a 90 degree angle, with the upper arm and hand held in a more upward position away from the right side of the head. Some of the skin on the back side of the right hand was still intact, however, all of the skin from the right upper arm was almost completely burned away, and the right hand was burned-completely to the bone. The hair on top of the victims head, which from this viewpoint is the only portion that can be seen, was totally burned away. The victims back had sustained severe burns, and the skin on the back was beginning to split in different places. The back of the upper torso was the only portion of the victim that was visible from this viewpoint. Scene indicated that the fire that had engulfed the residence was extremely intense in this location, and the magnitude of the fire had caused the floor in both the hallway and the areas adjacent to the hallway to collapse, which caused several objects to fall onto the lower torso of the victim. Large pieces of debris, wood, metal, insulation, and what looked to be a washing machine or dryer covered the victims lower torso, making it impossible to describe the condition of this portion of the body.
 

At this point in my investigation, I exited the residence, and briefed Cpt. J.W. Clark and Lt. J.G. Bryant, both of the Guilford County Sheriff's Department, of my findings to this point, after which time I proceeded back into the residence to photograph same.
 

Both black and white photographs were taken depicting overall and close-up of the following:
* entrance/exit doorway which lead from the kitchen into the garage/carport.
* kitchen, overall, with particular attention paid to the burn patterns of the floor tiles.
* livingroom, overall.
* hallway, overall (NOTE: FIRE PERSONNEL HAD PLACED A-LADDER ON THE FLOOR OF THE HALLWAY OVER THE COLLAPSED

216

APatricia must have come home at this point.


 

3E

PORTION, ALLOWING ACCESS TO AND FROM THE REAR PORTION OF THE RESIDENCE)
* hallway, depicting: #1, the ladder over the collapsed portion of the floor, #2, with the ladder moved away, and #3, with ladder moved away and measuring devise in place showing length of the collapsed portion of floor.
* the victim, depicting, #1, with and without ladder in place, #2, with and without measuring devise in place, #3, special attention paid to positioning of upper torso and hands.
* bedrooms, overall, with special attention paid to damage sustained, actual/attempts at ransacking in master and second bedrooms, and lack of same in third bedroom.
 

At this point in my investigation, I utilized the Hi-8 video camera and walked through the residence, depicting the interior of the, overall, with particular attention paid to all of the aforementioned photographed areas.
 

I then performed a preliminary walk-thru/search of the interior of the residence, during which time a semi-automatic handgun (unknown type/caliber) was discovered on the floor of the master bedroom, under a pillow, near the doorway of the bathroom. The barrel of the handgun was pointed towards the doorway of the bedroom, and looked to have been loaded, with magazine in place.  The handgun was equipped with some type of mechanism underneath the barrel. Mechanism looked to be some type of light beam sighting devise. Further observation in the same bedroom revealed a handgun holster on the side of the bed, just above the handgun. Without altering or disturbing the original postioning of items, same were photographed, depicting overall and close-up of position.
 

At this point in the investigation, I exited the residence, and once again briefed Cpt. Clark and Lt. Bryant on these newly discovered items. Lt. Bryant and Sgt. S. Shaver, C Platoon, G.C.S.D., accompanied this unit back into the residence. After viewing interior, the decision was made to dispatch unit #990, Sgt. L.L. Lindell, G.C.S.D. Crime Lab, to assist in the crime scene investigation.
 

Sgt. Lindell arrived and was briefed on status of scene and investigation to this point. I pointed out to Sgt. Lindell that to this point, photographs, video and an initial walk-thru and preliminary search (which-revealed the handgun) had been done, and the only items collected by this unit was the gasoline container, which was now secured.
 

I then turned control of the scene over to Sgt. Lindell. We proceeded to the exterior of the residence,

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3F

where I assisted Sgt. Lindell in photographing and processing the small boathouse adjacent to the residence, which was owned by the victim and her husband. Overall photographs were taken depicting the exterior of the boathouse, the boat contained within, and what looked
to be footwear impressions in the soft ground around the boathouse. Latent finger and palm impressions were photographed and lifted from the rear side portion of the boat.
 

I then assisted Sgt. Lindell and Ed Rich, Arson Investigator, Guilford County Fire Department, along with Jim Cross, Medical Examiner Transport, in removing the body of the victim from the residence.
 

Prior to moving, large pieces of debris, wood, metal, and, as mentioned before, a washing machine, which was in the family washroom on the right side of the hallway, had to be removed from the lower torso of the victim. Sgt. Lindell assisted in the removal of the victim from the collapsed floor, and I took color photographs depicting the condition and positioning of the body, which prior to moving could not be seen. The body was then lifted out of the hole, and additional photographs were taken depicting the area and materials which had previously been underneath the body. Further photographs were taken depicting an area of the carpeted floor which, from all indications at the scene, could have been the place where the victims head was positioned prior to the floor beneath the body collapsing. The carpeting was peeled back, which revealed a reddish colored substance,
which, if the head of the victim was positioned here, could have been blood which soaked through the carpet.
 

The body of the victim was then moved to the carport and placed on the floor of same.
Additional photographs were taken, overall and close-up, depicting the condition of the body.
 

This unit, along with Sgt, Lindell, Investigator Rich and Crime Scene Technician Stormy Cross, (unit #291) who had arrived at the scene a short time after the body was removed, went through the residence, taking additional photographs and collecting items. I took photographs depicting the condition of the burned furniture in the livingroom, and of what looked to be a burn pattern on the floor of the kitchen. With the assistancee of Investigator Rich, we determined one of the burn patterns on the kitchen floor beared a close resemblance to the size, shape and design of the bottom portion of the gasoline container which had been collected earlier. Also, investigator Rich directed this unit to cut out and collect a portion of the carpet on the floor in the livingroom, specifically a portion from the area of the floor in front of one of the couchs, for further analysis for accelerants.

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3G

At this point, no further assistance was required of this unit. I briefed unit #291 on the status of the crime scene investigation to this point, then left the scene around 0800 hrs. on 10-10-95, returning first to Greene Street Center, then going 10-42.
 

NOTE: WHILE WALKING THROUGH THE MASTER BEDROOM WITH LT. BRYANT AFTER THE DISCOVERY OF THE HANDGUN, I MOVED THE MIRROR IN THE MASTER BEDROOM, WHICH HAD BEEN TURNED OVER. PRINTS OF THIS UNIT MAY POSSIBLY BE ON MIRROR.
 

BRIAN C. YARBOROUGH CRIME SCENE TECHNICIAN

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Published August 15, 2006.  Report broken links or other problems.

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