‘Just tell me where Kiplyn is,’ father pleads with convicted killer
Despite pleas and new law, Timmy Brent Olsen still refuses to say what happened to Spanish Fork High student after she was killed in 1995
UTAH STATE PRISON — Timmy Brent Olsen claims he’s not the same person he was nearly 26 years ago, that he has spent years trying to make himself a better person.
Yet on Tuesday, Olsen still wouldn’t answer questions about where to find the remains of 15-year-old Kiplyn Davis, the girl whose body he helped move after she was murdered.
“I can’t do any more than I’ve already done,” he told Utah Board of Pardons and Parole Chairwoman Carrie Cochran.
Olsen, now 43, attended his first parole hearing Tuesday following his conviction for his role in the high-profile disappearance and death of Davis, of Spanish Fork. Olsen was convicted of a reduced charge of manslaughter in 2011 and was sentenced to one to 15 years in the Utah State Prison.
Olsen and another person he has not identified drove up Spanish Fork Canyon with Davis on May 2, 1995. Olsen has stated in prior police interviews that he saw the other person hit the girl on the head with a large rock, knocking her unconscious. The two returned to the scene later that evening to dispose of her body.
Davis’ remains have never been recovered, much to the frustration of the family.
Her disappearance remained a mystery for nearly a decade until local and federal authorities uncovered what they said was a conspiracy of silence among a group of people, some of whom were Davis’ Spanish Fork High School classmates, including Olsen.
In 2005, Olsen, David Rucker Leifson and three others — Scott Brunson, Garry Blackmore and Christopher Neal Jeppson — were indicted in federal court on charges of perjury before a grand jury and lying to a federal agent regarding comments about moving a girl’s body and creating false alibis.
Olsen was ordered to serve 12 ½ years in federal prison for perjury. In 2016, he was moved from the federal system to the Utah State Prison.
During Olsen’s sentencing for manslaughter in 2011, Richard Davis, Kiplyn’s father, told Olsen that he would speak on his behalf at his parole hearing if he would give them more information about the location of his daughter’s body.
Davis made the same plea to Olsen on Tuesday, 10 years later.
“I’m saying I will be your biggest advocate, I will ask the court to let you free,” he said. “All I’m asking ... just tell me where Kiplyn is.”
But Olsen refused to answer questions about where Kiplyn’s body might be, or about the case at all — just like he did when he was sentenced in 2011.
When Cochran asked Olsen to recount what happened the day Kiplyn disappeared — a standard request at all parole hearings to show that an inmate is willing to be honest and open about their crime and accept responsibility for it — Olsen declined to answer.
“Not until I speak to my lawyer,” he told Cochran.
Cochran reminded Olsen that the Utah Legislature just passed a bill and Gov. Spencer Cox signed it into law that addresses cases like this one. The law now states that people convicted of homicide cannot be eligible for parole unless they have “cooperated in the recovery of the victim’s remains.”
For the parole board to even consider releasing him early, Cochran reminded Olsen that board members need to feel like he’s made a good faith effort to help authorities recover Kiplyn Davis’ remains.
“With this is in mind, I don’t know if there’s any testimony you’d like to offer,” she prodded Olsen.
“I can’t answer that, I’m sorry,” he replied.
Olsen did talk about his achievements while incarcerated, such as getting a high school diploma and completing other courses. He told Cochran that it took him a while to change from the ways of his youth when he would hang out with friends and drink beer.
“I just decided it was time to grow up and start being a man like I should,” he said.
After acknowledging his achievements and how Olsen stated himself that he had changed, Cochran again pointed out that finding Davis’ body was a “paramount concern to many,” including the girl’s family and the community.
“A lot of people are seeking peace,” she told him.
Richard Davis then addressed the board, asking members to keep Olsen in prison as long as possible until he provides the information the family wants. Davis then pleaded with Olsen once again to give his family closure.
“What about my family? What about Kiplyn’s opportunity to graduate from high school?” he said, responding to Olsen’s accomplishments. “What about all the sleepless nights my family has gone through? All my family wants now is to bring Kiplyn home.”
Davis said he had hoped Olsen’s heart would have softened by now, after years of asking him to provide information and promising to advocate for him if he did, starting when the family agreed to the plea deal in 2011.
“All this has been in vain and we truly don’t understand why,” he said. “We can end the nightmare that my family has experienced for 26 years. ... I say forget the lawyers, listen to your heart. Listen to your conscience. To be a man you got to have integrity, you got to have honesty.”
When asked if he wanted to reply to Davis, Olsen took a long pause, and again stated that all he had to say was in written documents submitted to the parole board.
“I’ve done everything I can. I take responsibly,” he said. “There’s nothing else I can do. ... There’s nothing else I can provide that would change the situation.”
“There’s nothing you can do? Nothing?” Cochran pressed.
“No. I’ve done everything that I can do,” he replied.
The full five-member board will now vote whether to grant parole. If Olsen serves his full sentence, he will be released in 2026.