Numerous people have drowned at Monastery Beach in Carmel-by-the-Sea, Calif., earning it the nickname "Mortuary Beach." Kim Avis is not one of them. The Scottish street vendor reported missing at the notoriously dangerous site in 2019 in fact faked his own death while facing dozens of accusations of rape at home, reports the BBC. The scheme only added to his troubles. The 57-year-old, who used several aliases, was convicted last month at the High Court in Glasgow of raping three women, sexually assaulting an 11-year-old, attempting to rape a 12-year-old, and of failing to appear in court. He was sentenced Friday to 12 years in prison for the sex crimes and three years for skipping out on his initial trial, which was to begin in March 2019, per the Independent. His teenage son claimed Avis vanished during a swim at Monastery Beach while on vacation in late February.
A three-day search commenced before the story unraveled. The high surf typical of the beach was absent that night, per the BBC. And Avis was said to have gone swimming in only a pair of shorts, which was unusual for a winter evening. The Monterey County Sheriff's Office also found it odd that Avis had apparently taken his passport and other belongings into the ocean with him. Authorities eventually learned he'd flown into Los Angeles under the name Ken Gordon-Avis while on bail in Scotland. He was reportedly seen driving in the Big Sur area before he was traced to Colorado Springs, Colo., in July 2019, following a bank transaction. He was returned to Scotland, where he remained in custody until his trial. "We have had a lot of deaths at Monastery Beach, but I can't think of anyone using it as a ploy before," Sheriff's Commander Derrel Simpson says. (Read more faked death stories.)