Mother and son convicted of murdering elderly widow

NEW YORK - Mother-and-son grifters with ties to Carson City were convicted Thursday of murdering an 82-year-old millionaire widow in a plot to steal her elegant townhouse mansion.

The jury forewoman pronounced ''guilty'' 118 times - 58 times for Sante Kimes and 60 for Kenneth Kimes - in the slaying of Irene Silverman, a former Radio City Music Hall dancer whose body has never been found.

Sante Kimes, 65, and her 25-year-old son could get up to life in prison at sentencing June 27.

She was known as Sandy Chambers when she graduated from Carson High School in 1952. She and her family lived in a home at the corner of Division and Long streets, having moved to Carson from Los Angeles in 1947. Soon after graduation, she went to work in Sacramento. Prosecutors claim this move was the beginning of a long journey that led to crimes across the country.

Prosecutors said the two plotted to steal the six-story Beaux-Arts mansion Silverman's husband had left her.

Silverman vanished in 1998, the day the Kimeses were arrested for writing a bad $14,900 check for a car.

The Kimeses had not disposed of Silverman's personal documents or other suspicious items. In the car, police found loaded pistols, a red wig and two fright masks, plastic handcuffs, $30,000 in cash, a stun gun box, syringes, and a pink liquid similar to a known ''date rape'' drug.

They also found cassettes of Silverman's telephone conversations - secretly taped by the Kimeses - and a forged deed that transferred her townhouse to the Kimeses for a fraction of its nearly $10 million value.

Their alleged crime spree is told in the book "The Mother, the Son, and the Socialite" by Adrian Havill.


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment