Kentucky man admits to faking his own death to avoid paying over $100k in child support

Jesse E. Kipf, 39, admitted to creating a fake death certificate for himself using stolen credentials from a doctor, according to a plea deal filed late last month.

A Kentucky man admitted to faking his own death to avoid paying over $100,000 in outstanding child support to his ex-wife, according to a plea agreement filed in federal court late last month.

Jesse E. Kipf, 39, pleaded guilty to one count of aggravated identity theft and one count of computer fraud in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky on March 29. According to the plea agreement, Kipf accessed the Hawaii death registry system in January 2023 using the details of a doctor living in another state and created a case for own death. He then “assigned himself as the medical certifier for the case and certified that case,” which resulted in Kipf being listed as deceased in many government databases.


Jesse Kipf
Jesse Kipf.Grayson County Detention Center



“The defendant also infiltrated other states’ death registry systems using credentials he stole from other real people,” the plea agreement states. “The defendant faked his own death, in part, in order to avoid his outstanding child support obligations to his ex-wife.”

In addition, Kipf admitted to hacking into private business, governmental and corporate networks with information he stole from others and attempted to sell the access to the networks to buyers online, the court document states.

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His attorney, Thomas Miceli, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Kipf’s crimes resulted in more than $195,000 in estimated damages, including more than $79,000 in losses to governmental and corporate networks and more than $116,000 in losses suffered by his ex-wife. He has agreed to pay restitution to all parties he wronged, according to the plea agreement.

Kipf was initially indicted by a federal grand jury in November 2023 on five counts of computer fraud and three counts of aggravated identity theft, according to a news release. He was accused of illegally accessing state websites for Arizona, Hawaii and Vermont, as well as businesses GuestTek Interactive Entertainment Ltd. and Milestone Inc.

Kipf was also indicted on two counts of making false statements on applications in connection with federally insured financial institutions for allegedly opening two credit accounts in 2020 and 2023 with a false Social Security number, according to the indictment.

These initial charges carried a prison sentence of over 30 years.

After taking a plea deal, Kipf faces a maximum of seven years in prison and up to $500,000 in fines, per court records.

His sentencing hearing is scheduled for the afternoon of April 12.