Kelli Jo Krum
Kelli, circa 1994; James Dennis Ford
- Missing Since 08/11/1994
- Missing From Arcadia, Florida
- Classification Endangered Missing
- Sex Female
- Race White
- Date of Birth 01/12/1971 (52)
- Age 21 years old
- Height and Weight 4'10, 135 pounds
- Distinguishing Characteristics Caucasian female. Brown hair, blue eyes. Kelli has a scar on one of her elbows, and her ears are pierced. Some agencies may spell her first name "Kellie."
Details of Disappearance
Kelli was last seen in her residence on Second Avenue in Arcadia, Florida with her infant daughter, Kelsi, just prior to 12:00 a.m. on August 11, 1994. Kelli was in the process of moving to her parents' home in Sebring, Florida at the time, and she planned to start a new job at a plastics manufacturer in a week. She dropped most of her clothes, a baby swing, a walker and other items off at their house that day.
She and Kelsi were reportedly last seen by their cousin, James Dennis "Jimbo" Ford, just before he left their home. Kelli was apparently speaking on the phone and packing boxes at the time Ford saw her. Neither she nor Kelsi have been heard from again. Kelli left a note behind at her parents' house, saying she was going back to Arcadia, Florida to pick up her paycheck and would return the next day.
Kelli and Kelsi's residence did not show any signs of a struggle when investigators searched the house shortly after their disappearances. Their belongings had been partially packed in preparation for the pending move.
Kelli didn't take her vehicle or any clothing for herself or her daughter; only her purse and car keys were missing. Her uncle reported that he passed the Kelli and Kelsi's residence and saw Kelli's car parked in the driveway, facing the street, prior to their disappearances; later, he passed the house again and saw the car turned around in the driveway, facing the house.
Ford was given a polygraph test in 1997 regarding the Krums' cases and failed. He refused to take another lie detector test and has never been charged in connection with the disappearances.
Ford was convicted in 1999 for the brutal 1997 murders of a Punta Gorda, Florida couple, Greg and Kim Malony. Greg was Ford's co-worker. Ford shot Greg in the back of the head, beat him with an ax and slit his throat. He raped Kim, beat her and shot her in the head.
He was arrested a short time later and DNA evidence tied him to the crimes. He is currently on death row awaiting execution. Photos of him are posted with this case summary.
The investigation into the homicides led authorities to investigate the renewed possibility Ford was involved in the Krums' cases, as well as an unsolved Florida homicide from 1984. Investigators searched an orange grove near Arcadia in 1997 after Ford's arrest when they received a tip that the Krums' bodies were buried in the area.
No evidence was located at the site. Ford maintains that he knows nothing about the disappearances of Kelli and Kelsi.
There have been no arrests in the Krums' disappearances and the cases remain unsolved, but foul play is suspected.
- DeSoto County Sheriff's Office 863-993-4700
Updated 3 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated August 4, 2018; details of disappearance updated.