Home News Couple in Submarine Spy Case Stewed Over Cash and Politics

Couple in Submarine Spy Case Stewed Over Cash and Politics


In 2005, the couple, who had married in Georgia two years earlier than, moved to Colorado, after Ms. Toebbe completed her Ph.D. in anthropology at Emory College. Each took jobs on the personal Kent Denver College.

Two years later, Mr. Toebbe began his personal Ph.D. program on the Colorado College of Mines. The nuclear physics program there’s funded in good measure by authorities grants. It funnels lots of its college students to jobs on the nationwide labs, for work on nuclear weapons, or to naval reactors, the place they’ll work on the following generations of nuclear submarines or plane carriers.

Mr. Toebbe’s preliminary mission, involving work associated to nuclear fusion on the Lawrence Livermore Nationwide Laboratory, would have taken him to a profession in California, working on the lab and on nuclear weapons. Colleagues bear in mind him as a diligent pupil and a robust presenter who might convey complicated concepts to an viewers.

However the Ph.D. program supplied solely a $20,000 annual stipend. Ms. Toebbe’s instructing wage was additionally modest. In 2005, they bought a newly constructed four-bedroom home for $268,500 within the Denver suburb of Aurora, with two mortgages overlaying the complete price.

When the monetary disaster hit in 2008, housing costs dropped precipitously. By July 2010, the couple was behind on mortgage funds and the lender filed for foreclosures. The Toebbes have been compelled to promote at a major loss.

Across the similar time, Mr. Toebbe started speaking to mates about his must help his household and earn more cash. Whereas working on the nationwide lab would finally result in a better-paying profession path, the navy supplied a faster pay improve. Mr. Toebbe swapped analysis tasks, taking a much less promising line of examine, however one that may take him to the East Coast. And in July 2012, abandoning his Ph.D. and settling for a grasp’s diploma, he joined the Navy.

Credit score…West Virginia Regional Jail and Correctional Facility Authority, through Related Press

In the summertime of 2012, they moved with their younger kids to Annapolis.

Within the Navy, Mr. Toebbe, who reached the rank of lieutenant, labored largely within the Washington space, primarily on naval reactors, but in addition did a short tour on the Pentagon. A key query for prosecutors — and one being debated by Navy officers — is when Mr. Toebbe started gathering the knowledge that prosecutors say he finally tried to promote.