Kimball's mug shot. (Rocky Mountain News)

Kimball's mug shot. (Rocky Mountain News)

Boulder County prosecutors make a deal with Scott Kimball.

He pleads guilty to stealing $55,000 from Lafayette optometrist Cleve Armstrong as a habitual offender, and is sentenced to 48 years in prison.

In exchange, prosecutors draw up a memorandum of understanding in the missing-persons case. If he will lead investigators to the bodies of Jennifer Marcum, LeAnn Emry and Terry Kimball, he will only face a single count of second-degree murder.

They will otherwise pursue a first-degree murder conviction, punishable by life in prison without parole or the death penalty. But that will be difficult with only one set of remains — Kaysi McLeod’s — that show no evidence of the cause or manner of death.

For prosecutors Amy Okubo and Katharina Booth, the deal represents their only chance of finding the missing victims.

“Unfortunately, we couldn’t do that without his help,” Booth said. “It was a deal with the devil.”

Read the Rocky Mountain News article.