Woman murdered by jilted ex who almost decapitated love rival in brutal attack
After a difficult seven-year relationship that had finally come to an end, Heather Frank tentatively started to date again.
The mum of three sons had endured a tough time with her ex, but after a night out in her hometown of Greeley, Colorado, Heather, 48, met a musician she liked – and who already had a following of fans.
Stanley “Scott” Sessions was a talented trumpet player in a popular Colorado band, The Movers And Shakers.
Scott, 54, was well known in the area. Music and singing were his life, but he also loved animals and had his own painting business.
He was kind and creative – just like Heather. When Heather wasn’t working as a manager at a local diner, she loved to craft and sew, and enjoyed decorating and cooking.
They had the potential to be a great match.
Scott, with his big heart and gentle ways, was very different to Heather’s ex, Kevin Dean Eastman.
While Scott liked to put his loved ones first, Eastman had a drinking problem that had forced his family to show him some tough love.
He had nowhere to live after his family said he needed to stop drinking, and as he struggled to find work his life spiralled out of control.
Eastman also had a temper that Heather had taken the brunt of during their volatile relationship.
During one argument, Eastman had yanked hair from Heather’s head. He’d tried to control her and threatened her with violence.
Friends had seen her upset after their fights and they knew Heather always had to say where she was going and who with. But, finally, their relationship had come to an end.
Then in January 2020, Heather went to a blues concert and met charismatic Scott. It was the depths of winter, with snow on the ground.
They went on a date and were planning on meeting again on 8 February at Heather’s home. Their romance had just begun.
On 10 February, a snow plough driver spotted something burning in a Larimer County ditch and went to investigate it.
If he hadn’t, all traces of the partially burnt corpse he found wrapped in plastic next to a smouldering log might have been lost forever. The body belonged to Scott.
Scott’s throat had been cut so deeply with a knife that his spinal cord was severed. He’d almost been decapitated then someone had tried to set his body on fire.
Scott hadn’t been heard from since 8 February, when he spoke to his dad and told him he was going to see a friend.
Investigators discovered through messages and mobile tracking that Scott had gone to Heather’s home.
When they arrived, they found a pool of blood by the front entry that was so huge it had soaked through to the wood floor below. There was no sign of Heather.
The police quickly discovered that Heather had a violent ex and wanted to speak to Eastman. But with the crime scene at Heather’s home, she was a suspect too.
As the community heard about Scott’s death, they were overcome with grief. Officers started to hunt down Heather and Eastman.
A week later, on 16 February, the police got a lead and went to a rural property that belonged to a former employer of Eastman.
They found Heather’s dead body in a woodpile, next to a smouldering firepit. She’d been shot twice in the
heart at close range.
Later that day, Eastman was arrested at a gas station as he was filling up a container with petrol. Scott’s body had been set alight, the police knew.
Was Eastman heading back to add fuel to Heather’s body? He also had bullets in his pockets that matched those used to kill Heather.
When questioned, Eastman said he’d gone to Heather’s home, unannounced, to talk about getting back together.
He said that Heather had killed Scott and he’d helped her get rid of the body – but insisted he hadn’t murdered Heather.
Investigators didn’t agree. They determined that Eastman had gone to Heather’s home to beg for another chance – but Scott had arrived, and an angry Eastman had ambushed him with a knife when he walked in.
They believed Heather had been forced to cover up the killing – and then because she was a witness to the crime, she was murdered by Eastman too.
Eastman was charged with the deaths of Scott and Heather. Due to Covid and complex legal proceedings, it took more than two years for the case to get to court.
Finally, at the trial in June this year, Heather and Scott’s families waited for justice. The prosecution said it was a crime about “power, control, coercion and revenge”.
They said Eastman was jealous that Heather was moving on while his own life was falling apart.
“This case is about domestic violence,” they said. “He didn’t want to lose Heather Frank, and because of that, two people lost their lives.”
The jury were told that Eastman’s relationship with Heather was volatile – even abusive. And on 8 February, he’d savagely cut Scott’s throat before killing Heather too.
While no one will ever know for sure, it was suggested that Heather had been terrified and helped Eastman through fear. She’d died because she’d witnessed Scott’s murder.
Eastman’s lawyers said that it was Heather who had killed Scott and Eastman had helped her to try and cover it up, with the assistance of a former male colleague.
Then later, without Eastman knowing, that employee had panicked and killed Heather. That man was cleared of any crimes.
They said the police had assumed the murders were down to the “toxic ex” and hadn’t explored any other possibilities.
But why would Heather kill Scott? They’d barely started dating. It was Eastman who had the motive.
In July this year, after a three-week trial, the jury convicted Eastman, 50, of killing Heather and Scott.
He was found guilty of two counts of first-degree murder and tampering with evidence. Further weapon charges are pending for a later date.
At the sentencing, the loved ones of the victims shared stories and explained their heartbreak. Scott’s friends and bandmates spoke of his talent, infectious smile, his fun personality and his loyalty.
Scott’s dad Stan said he’d had to tell his dying wife they’d lost their son when Scott’s body was found, and she’d passed away two months later. But, incredibly, Stan said he needed to forgive Eastman.
“I don’t want to carry his burden on my shoulders,” he said.
Heather’s family said she was loving, outgoing and funny. Her son Alex said, “My mum was more than my mum, she was my best friend. She will always be with me.”
The judge said Eastman’s acts were vicious and sentenced him to two life sentences, as well as an additional 27 years behind bars.
Another love story had ended in senseless tragedy. Eastman didn’t just stop at ruining his own life with his jealous temper – he took two innocent people with him.