|Full name||Vanessa Kimmel|
|Cause of death||Strangulation|
|Residence||Pacific Bay, U.S.|
|Family||Sharon Kimmel (mother)|
|Partner(s)||Sammy Duncan (boyfriend) †|
|Appears in||Criminal Case|
|First appeared||Case #7: Easy Prey (s2)|
Vanessa Kimmel (1990-2014) was a suspect in the murder investigations of banker Coleen Truman in Easy Prey (Case #7 of Pacific Bay) and her boyfriend, street swindler Sammy Duncan, in Death by Moonshine (Case #9 of Pacific Bay). She was then killed in Smoke and Mirrors (Case #10 of Pacific Bay).
Vanessa was a local girl of 24 years of age donning a severely-worn faded pink cloth (given the wear and tear shown) and a faded pink lace necklace. She had messy blonde hair extending to her chest area and wore black mascara dripping down from her eyes, and sported bruises and wounds. Moreso, Vanessa was known to consume rum and moonshine. Besides that, she was said to play dominoes and use eggs. Vanessa also sustained a skin rash (eczema) on her right shoulder during the player's duty in the Bayou.
Events of Criminal Case
Vanessa was a Bayou Bleu local who dreamed of being a resident of Ocean Shore one day.
Vanessa gave a very cold welcome to Amy and the player after their first investigation in Gator Land, where Coleen was found dead at. She claimed Gator Land was cursed, but Amy demanded Vanessa to cooperate as the team was not willing to listen to Vanessa.
Vanessa's shabby features came to Amy's attention (not to mention Vanessa's paranoia) that Vanessa needed hefty help. Vanessa was aghast that the team would not listen to her but Amy stood up to Vanessa by asking her if she was in Gator Land at the time of Coleen's death. All Vanessa could recall were whispers, screams, a thud, and a rustle of leaves, signaling that the killer went to the woods, and suggested the team investigate the hunters' shack.
Vanessa was interrogated in the woods a second time after Yann discovered a hair sample matching Vanessa's person on the gris-gris doll found and pieced back together during the team's second visit to the hunters' shack. There was one flaw—instead of using a sample of Coleen's hair, Vanessa went ahead and used her hair to forge the gris-gris doll of Coleen, which proved the doll did not work at all.
Vanessa admitted she made the Coleen gris-gris doll as she wanted to prevent Coleen from getting bad luck from the entire Bayou, whom Coleen's oppressive behavior was not well-received. Even though Vanessa was nice to Coleen (and admitted she wanted Coleen to help her get out of Bayou Bleu), Coleen showed no respect to Vanessa at all. Vanessa did not need to worry about Bayou Bleu in the meantime as she was found innocent after Steve Bundy was found guilty of the murder of Coleen Truman.
Vanessa was in the red following the investigation as Amy had to put up with a catfight between her and Shelly Dulard, in which Vanessa accused Shelly of stealing her bag while Shelly countered that Vanessa stole her pills. Amy and the player had to go through the trouble of calming both women down, and warned them that any further misconduct would result in an arrest.
Vanessa found herself in the red immediately after Frank found an advertisement of a loft Derek Stone used to reside at. Once Vanessa was approached by the team, she told the team she counted on Sammy to take her away from Bayou Bleu, but since Sammy was now dead, her attempts to leave Bayou Bleu seemed to be futile. Frank assumed the victim was Vanessa's boyfriend but Vanessa explicitly stated that she was not in love and wanted Sammy's attention to bail her out of the Bayou. All Vanessa wanted was more manageable jobs since the Bayou was not paying her enough, and did not like how Sammy operated for profit in the creepy forest, as she hinted at Sammy's illicit moonshine business.
Vanessa became a serious suspect when Frank caught her allegedly escaping in Sammy's boat, which became a canvassed crime scene by Frank's way, but Vanessa did not mean to escape as she accidentally casted it off, prompting the player to interrogate Vanessa a second time, after which Frank and the player took a look at the boat to see whether or not Vanessa was obstructing justice.
While Frank and the player checked the boat, Vanessa told the team she only wanted to retrieve her belongings and admitted she enjoyed a glass of moonshine or two with the victim, but Frank demanded Vanessa full disclosures as to why Vanessa would be on the victim's boat. Vanessa admitted that she gave Sammy all her savings since the victim promised her to bail her out of the Bayou one day, but Sammy used Vanessa's money to start a moonshine business, which angered Vanessa as she grew discontent with her life every minute she spent in Bayou Bleu—all Vanessa wanted to do was to take her life back so she could head to Ocean Shore.
Vanessa found herself in deep red following the close of the case when Hannah and Amy found out about Vanessa's prostitutive past from a book called "Lost Souls"—a collection of drug addicts, homeless people, foster kids, and street walkers. In addition, the police started to get worried about Vanessa after the player forensically dusted a beer coaster revealing her intent to confess her dark secrets at the graveyard.
Vanessa was found lifeless as she was discovered as a human voodoo doll in the graveyard, prompting Frank and the player to send the body to the morgue for autopsy. Roxie told the team that, apart for the lips being sewn, Vanessa's eyeballs were missing since the killer removed them. Despite all the creepy things the team saw in Vanessa's body, Roxie determined that Vanessa was strangled to death, thus confirming the strangulation as the murder weapon. Roxie also discovered the victim's lips were sewn with a fish hook and fishing line. This determined that the killer knew fishing.
Throughout the case, the team found a tree stump with a leech inside, something which Amy found unpleasant. The team sent the leech to Yann, and in spite of Amy's turn-off of leeches, Yann was able to determine that the leech bit the killer due to spicy food remains in its tail, determining the killer had a leech bite. Nearing the end, Yann analyzed a spool and a restored tombstone and, using gravitational analysis of the tombstone, he deduced the force of the impact (the killer pushed Vanessa against the tombstone causing it to break) suggested that the killer weighed 145 lbs whereas the spool was touched by both Vanessa and the killer, and in spite of the difficulty Yann experienced with the spool, he confirmed that the killer cells were female cells—thus the killer was female.
Killer and motives
The killer turned out to be voodoo priestess Erikah Mabayo.
When Amy and the player approached Erikah for the arrest, Erikah threatened to kill Amy and the player with her voodoo unless the team walked away from Erikah, to which Amy refused. The voodoo doll did not work on Amy, confirming Erikah's voodoo practice as a fad.
The team lambasted Erikah for owning a brothel and utilizing fake voodoo to leave her alone, but Erikah countered by claiming herself to be a very persuasive person and continued by assuming certain girls who become prostitutes wanted to work for money to leave Bayou Bleu were easy to enslave to cover her tracks, but her tracks were ruined when Alec Howard was found to have impregnated Vanessa—which triggered Vanessa's urge to leave Bayou Bleu for good. Erikah claimed to be the type of person who believed no one was allowed to expose her secrets—something Vanessa unknowingly did upon her abdication of the Bayou, so to keep herself secret, Erikah strangled Vanessa and turned the young woman into a lifeless voodoo doll.
The Honorable Dante accused Erikah not just of the murder of Vanessa and three other women, but also defiling humanity by preying on prostitutes, whom Erikah claimed were easy to manipulate, but Erikah told the Honorable Dante that she was a prostitute in the past as she was abused and tortured by men in the past and felt that males, not females, should be charged for those crimes, causing Judge Dante to counter that justice fails due to people too timid to speak up due to Erikah's false use of voodoo to ensure Bayou Bleu would be too timid to seek the help of justice—enough to warrant a lifetime jail sentence with no parole for Erikah. Thus ended the voodoo fad which started since the player's arrival at Bayou Bleu.
- Vanessa is one of the many suspects who appeared in two cases.
- Vanessa is one of the characters who make an appearance in the second-to-last case of a district as a suspect, only to be murdered in the very district's finale.
- Easy Prey (Case #7 of Pacific Bay)
- Death by Moonshine (Case #9 of Pacific Bay)
- Smoke and Mirrors (Case #10 of Pacific Bay)
- The Final Countdown (Case #59 of Pacific Bay; mentioned)