After his release from FCI-Englewood as an FBI informant, Scott Kimball calls LeAnn Emry for the first time. He introduces himself as “Hannibal.”
Emry’s boyfriend, federal inmate Steven Holley, knew Kimball behind bars, and asked him to connect with LeAnn to share the details of a plan to help him escape prison.
Holley told LeAnn to listen to Hannibal, that if everything went off as it should, the couple would soon be able to unite in Mexico and start a new chapter in their lives.
Holley writes LeAnn: "You can trust Hannible." (Courtesy of Howard Emry)
E-mailing her cousin, LeAnn Emry wrote that "Hannibal" was a major blessing in her life. (Courtesy of Howard Emry)
In e-mails to her cousin, LeAnn Emry writes about her relationship with “Hannibal,” the alias Scott Kimball used with her. She claims they’re having sex, and makes vague references to criminal activity they’re involved in.
“I need him to get what I want and desperately need,” LeAnn writes. “He doesn’t ask much in return, and he never abuses the situation that I am in, even though he could very easily.”
“He’s a major blessing in my life. Major.”
But she knew he had a dangerous side, too.
“Hell, if Hanable knew I was talking to you, he’d fucking have me killed in a second,” she wrote the same cousin four days earlier. “Plus, he’d have you killed too.”
Read more of LeAnn’s emails to her cousin (PDF).
LeAnn, in a photo later found on Kimball's computer.
LeAnn Emry leaves her home in Centennial, where she lives with her parents, Howard and Darlene Emry.
She tells them she is going on a caving trip to Mexico with friends.
Instead, she secretly leaves on a whirlwind voyage through five states, intermittently meeting up with Scott Kimball, aka “Hannibal.”
Before heading out, LeAnn called her younger sister, Michelle, with a message: If anything bad should happen, Michelle should know her sister loved her.
LeAnn's Super 8 receipt (Courtesy of Howard Emry)
During a two-week trip across the West, LeAnn Emry writes a cascade of bad checks, overdrawing her account by $4,000.
She bounces checks in Laramie, Wyo., Baker City, Ore., Vancouver, Wash., and Reno, Nev., leaving a paper trail that her father will piece together after her disappearance.
Investigators later place Kimball in some of the same spots at the same time, but he also goes to Seattle on FBI business.
At a pawnshop in Hermiston, Ore., Emry buys the .40-caliber Firestar handgun that will become her murder weapon.
She is back in Colorado by Jan. 27, when she checks into a Super 8 motel in Grand Junction.
She checks out two days later.
LeAnn Emry’s father, Howard Emry, meets with Steven Holley in prison.
Holley, who was dating LeAnn when she disappeared, again asks Emry to contact the FBI.
He tells Howard that LeAnn was under the care of “Hannibal,” but he won’t say who that is.
Emry calls the FBI again but never hears back.
(Date is approximate.)
Howard and Darlene Emry, with a photo of their daughter LeAnn.
FBI Special Agent Jonathan Grusing calls Howard Emry at home in Payette, Idaho, and asks to speak to his daughter, LeAnn.
“She’s been missing for nearly five years now,” Emry replies.
He tells the agent he fears LeAnn was killed back in January 2003.
Find “Hannibal,” he says. “That’s who murdered my daughter.”
FBI Special Agent Jonathan Grusing and Lafayette police detective Gary Thatcher interview Steven Holley at the federal prison in Florence, Colo.
They learn that his girlfriend, LeAnn Emry, had been with Scott Kimball in the month before she disappeared on Jan. 29, 2003.
Holley, who spent time in the same unit as Kimball at FCI-Englewood in 2002, said Kimball went by the name “Hannibal.”