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Episode 8

The I-5 Strangler: A Hunt for Other Victims

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Roger Reece Kibbe, better known as the I-5 Strangler, was convicted of seven murders total. The first murder conviction was in 1991 for the murder of 17-year-old Darcie Frackenpohl in 1987. Roughly 20 years later, thanks to advancements in DNA, Kibbe was convicted of six other murders.

Kibbe's MO varied in the way he obtained his victims. But he always preyed on vulnerable women--those stranded on the roadsides or on the fringe of society. Next he restrained the women, usually with handcuffs. After that he would sexually assault them and then strangle them. At some point he would cut their clothes and often their hair before dumping the bodies.

Roger Kibbe was finally captured in September 1987. He attempted to abduct a sex worker who fought back. The victim not only fought off Kibbe but flagged down an officer that was nearby. Next the officer stopped Kibbe and found his kill kit inside.

Below we have information on each of his known victims, as well as two possible victims. We need the Murder Squad to help us identify possible other victims.


Known Victims of Roger Kibbe:

Lou Ellen Burleigh-
Kibbe posted a job posting at 21-year-old Lou Ellen's business trade school. He identified himself has "John Brown." "Mr. Brown" informed Lou Ellen that the business was under construction and the interview would take place in his van. Kibbe as "Mr. Brown" appeared unassuming, and Lou Ellen got inside his van. Her second interview on September 11th, 1977, was the last time she was seen alive.

Her remains were never fully recovered. But thanks to dogged police work, including taking Kibbe to the site, a bone was located. In June 2011, the DNA was matched to Lou Ellen Burleigh.

Lora Heedick-
Lora was a 20-year-old sex worker from the Modesto area. She was seen getting into a car with a man in his 50's. After she entered his white Ford Maverick on April 21, 1986, she wasn't seen alive again. He restrained her hands with a parachute cord. He sexually assaulted and killed her.

Her body was recovered in September of 1986. It appeared as if Kibbe was trying to dump her body in a nearby waterway but her body was entangled in brush. Her arms were still restrained by a cord and her pants had been cut in the crotch.

Barbara Ann Scott-
29-year-old Barbara Ann was a sex worker in the Pittsburg, California area. Kibbe at the time worked at the L & M furniture company and had made a date with Scott. He told he would pay her for the whole night. On July 2, 1986, Barbara Ann Scott went on that date but never returned.

Scott was sexually assaulted and killed. Kibbe then instructed her to kneel down before he proceeded to strangle Scott with her own sweater. He hid her body under a low laying tree on the Antioch Golf Course. Kibbe originally denied killing Scott, but DNA later confirmed law enforcements suspicions.

Stephanie Brown-
On July 15th, 1986, 19-year-old Stephanie Brown had given friends a ride home after a night out near the Pocket Road area. Her car was found abandoned on I-5 at the Hood Franklin exit. It is unclear why she pulled over. Her killer gave two reasons, neither of which law enforcement believes. Instead law enforcement thinks Kibbe performed a false traffic stop in order to abduct Stephanie Brown.

Her body was found several hours later off Correia Road, south of Highway 12 in San Joaquin County. She had been strangled and visible marks from restraints were on her wrist. Her clothes and hair were cut.

Charmaine Sabrah-
26-year-old Charmaine Sabrah had been shopping earlier in the day with her mom on August 18th, 1986. On the way home, their car broke down on I-5 near Peltier Road. A man pulled up in a Datsun 280Z and offered to help the women. He drove Charmaine's mother to use a pay phone to call for help. She could reach no one. So, he returned Charmaine's mother to the broken down car and her daughter. The man offered to drive them individually home due to the size of his car. Charmaine's mother insisted she go first because of her small child waiting at home. The last time her mother saw Charmaine alive was when she got into that sports car.

Hunters found Sabrah's remains in November of 1986. She had been bound, sexually assaulted and strangled. A portion of her pantyhose had been cut in the crotch.

Katherine Kelly Quinones-
Katherine Kelly Quinones was a 25-year-old sex worker from the Sacramento area. She was last seen by anyone other than her killer when she was released from Sacramento County Jail on November 5, 1986. Kibbe claimed that he picked her up in the area she worked though-not from the jail.

Quinones body was located on December 21st, 1986, on a hill next to the road at Lake Berryessa on the northwest side. There was a garrote around her neck made from a parachute cord and two wooden rods. The garrote was used to strangle Quinones. Kibbe said he left the murder weapon because it was tangled in her hair. He also admitted to cutting her hair.

Darcie Frackenpohl-
17-year-old Darcie Frackenpohl was a runaway and thought to be a sex worker in the West Sacramento area. Her body was found in September of 1987 near Lake Tahoe. She had been strangled with a garrote that used the same material Kibbe used to go skydiving.



Possible Other Victims:

Karen Finch:
25-year-old Karen Finch was traveling from Sonora to her home in Lodi on June 7, 1986. She had been visiting her boyfriend. Her car was found abandoned at North Ripon Road and French Camp Road on June 8th.

Karen's body was found on June 14th off of Keifer Blvd in Deer Creek. Unlike Kibbe's known victims, Karen was stabbed. Her shorts and underwear were cut down the sides. There was DNA recovered at the scene, but it did not match Kibbe.

Robbin Simpson:
Like Katherine Kelly Quinones, Robbin Simpson was a sex worker who was last seen leaving the Sacramento County Jail. She exited the jail in April 1987 and was never seen alive again.

Her remains were found in June of 1987 off of Highway 50 in El Dorado County. However, Robbin was not identified until the early 2000's.


ASSIGNMENTS
We know that Kibbe spent the majority of his time in Northern California. But he was from the Chula Vista/San Diego area, where he visited his father often. When looking into this week's assignments, please do not just look at Northern California-Kibbe may have been active through the entire state.

This week's assignment has three parts:

The first part of the assignment concentrates on the two above possible victims. We are looking for anyone who knew Robin Simpson or Karen Finch--any family, friends, witnesses. The more information we can learn about them and their cases, the more likely we can find their killer(s).

The next part of the assignment is to look at the photos of Roger Kibbe at the top of the page. Apart from the murders he's been convicted, Kibbe also sexually assaulted women. We know of several cases that he assaulted sex workers. We are looking for any living victims of Roger Kibbe to help fill out the timeline. Please share the photos.

The last part of the assignment is looking for other possible victims of Roger Kibbe. He claims to have a nine year period where he killed no one from September 1977 to April 1986. Law enforcement does not believe this to be true. We are asking you to look for cases that involve strangulation, sexual assault and clothes cutting. If you find any possible victims, please contact us so we can get viable tips to retired investigator Vito Bertocchini before he interviews Kibbe again.

CODE OF CONDUCT:

1. Do not name names publicly. Do not post side by side photos. Send everything to the police or to this page and we will forward to the police.
2. Do not contact any family members.
3. Do not doxx each other and be civil. We all want the same thing. 

As tips come in, Jensen and Holes will work to verify them. If they look good, we will publish them here.

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