Posted on | March 1, 2014 | 8 Comments
Perhaps the most shocking element of Kimberlin’s 1978 bombing spree was that authorities believed it was an attempt to distract police investigating the murder of a 65-year-old grandmother, Julia Scyphers.
As [Joe] Gelarden reported in a 1981 [Indianapolis Star] article, Scyphers had become concerned about her daughter Sandra Barton’s involvement with Kimberlin, who had shown a “strange affection” for Sandra’s young daughter Debbie. The girl was 10 years old when 20-year-old Kimberlin met her in 1974, and Sandra permitted Debbie to accompany Kimberlin on vacation trips to Disney World, Mexico, and Hawaii. According to [Mark] Singer’s  book [Citizen K], Kimberlin’s acquaintances recalled him introducing the preteen as “my girlfriend,” and the girl’s mother told a co-worker that Kimberlin was “grooming” Debbie to be his wife. Kimberlin’s interest in the little girl alarmed her grandmother. In the summer of 1978, Julia Scyphers arranged to have the girl and her older sister leave their mother’s home and move in with her, and when Kimberlin was unable to see his “girlfriend,” he reportedly threatened suicide. A few weeks later, Scyphers was shot dead in what investigators suspected was a murder-for-hire, and one of Kimberlin’s associates in the drug trade was identified as the shooter by Scyphers’ husband. But Fred Scyphers, the only eyewitness to the crime, died of a stroke shortly thereafter, and prosecutors dropped the murder case, which remains unresolved to this day.
Kimberlin was ultimately convicted in the bombing spree, yet has never admitted his guilt, instead claiming that he was framed by a “corrupt government.” . . .