COLORADO CITY, TX (KWES) - We're almost at the five year anniversary, and the investigation continues in the case of Colorado City teen, Hailey Dunn. An investigation, some say, has produced more questions than answers.
"Our words reveal who we are. They were revealing themselves, as we all do, in the words they choose."
From the early stages of the investigation into Hailey Dunn's disappearance, investigators announced they had a person of interest; Billie Dunn's, then boyfriend, Shawn Adkins. a person, not unknown to Hailey's father, Clint.
"We were content, with each other. I mean, we didn't speak a lot. We didn't hang out," Clint said.
Investigators say it was Adkins' conflicting statements that put the spotlight on him. To say the least, Clint was none too pleased, when he found out.
"I wanted to go over there and wring his neck and see if it was him. That's the first thing I wanted to do," he explained.
But, it was apparent from the beginning, if he was going down, Shawn had no intention of going down alone.
During an initial, voluntary, interview, investigators asked him who was responsible and who did they need to look at.
Shawn simply said, "both of us," referring to himself and Billie. When they asked to check his cell phone, to see his call and text history, investigators found 3 calls to someone named Billie. A bit later in the interview, when asked to see the phone again, investigators say Adkins deleted something.
When they got the phone, the information they had just seen, was gone. When asked what happened to it, Adkins couldn't give them an answer. Keep in mind, Shawn Adkins is, and has been, the only, named, person of interest in this case. But, this won't be the last time we hear mention of Billie Dunn.
The investigation into Hailey Dunn's disappearance made national headlines. It even caught the attention of Nancy Grace. It was an interview with Hailey's mom, Billie, that caught the attention of Peter Hyatt.
According to Peter, "While I was watching it and listening to the mother of a missing 13 year old girl speak, the first words, from the missing 13-year old's mother, told me two very important things about the case. From there, I wrote a couple of articles about the case, then went on to contact local law enforcement just to give them that information."
Peter's experience in statement analysis is extensive. He has consulted on hundreds of cold cases and investigations, across the country.
With regard to the Hailey Dunn investigation, Hyatt says, many of the answers investigators are searching for, can be found in statements that have already been made.
"The mother came on and says, "my daughter was gone to a sleepover and she never showed up at her friend's house." Nancy Grace asked a question, "How far did she have to go?" The mother said, "3 or 4 blocks." But, the mother did not stop speaking at that point. She continued and she said "she wasn't allowed to just go out, after dark. I would not allow that." That told me, this mother, is needing to project herself as a good mother. So, something is wrong."
A search of the Dunn house found some interesting things; copies and copies of articles, printed from various websites, depicting things like mass murders, serial killers, murders of family members and the like. Well over 200 pages that Billie admitted she printed for herself and Shawn to read. She said it was a hobby they shared.
Investigators say, Shawn had described Hailey as a good girl in the early stages of the investigation. But, as time went on, his opinion seemed to change. He, later, described her as promiscuous, sexually active, even a drug user. Anyone who knew Hailey knew that wasn't her.
"I seen he had a spotlight on him. I was looking everywhere else, to make sure nothing slips out, nobody sneaks past. I wanted everybody to be checked," Adkins said during the investigation.
More on Shawn's behavior and conflicting statements; Hailey was reported missing Monday, December 27. Shawn said he went to work that morning and was fired after an altercation with a supervisor and went straight to his mother's house in Big Spring. His employer said there was no confrontation. In fact, Shawn was seen, walking into the break room, buying a Dr. Pepper, then taking off around 6:10 that morning.
Billie left for work, in Snyder, around 6:20 a.m. Cell phone records show Adkins was making phone calls from the house in Colorado City, from about 6:35 a.m. until almost 7 a.m. Investigators determined, Hailey, would have been alone, at house, at that time.
Hailey's brother, David, told investigators he got home around 4 p.m. that afternoon and pounded on the door for about 5 minutes. But no one would let him in. He finally got in, he said, through a window. Billie confirmed David's claim and added when David did get inside, he saw Shawn, in the hallway, with a deer in headlights look on his face.
Adkins took 3 separate lie detector tests. During the third, he was asked if he knew of Hailey's whereabouts and failed. Then, he was asked where Hailey could be found. His answer was In Scurry County. When investigators tried to zero in on a specific location in Scurry County, Shawn walked out of the interview.
Billie also volunteered twice to take a lie detector test. The first didn't happen because she was under the influence of narcotics. But, during the second, she was asked if she had anything to do with Hailey's disappearance. The test showed deception. When asked to explain why she failed, Billie couldn't and, like Shawn, walked out of the interview.
Things aren't looking too good for Shawn Adkins. But, still, neither he, nor anyone else, for that matter, has been arrested. Clint recalls a very candid conversation with the lead investigator in 2011.
He said, "It was when we were still searching for Hailey. We were at the Civic Center in Colorado City. Patrick Tombs and Billy Sides, called me outside, to talk to me. They told me, in front of the Civic Center, Shawn Adkins killed my daughter. They didn't say it was off the record or not to say anything to anybody. They just told me, flat out."
Hailey was found, in Scurry County, where Shawn Adkins said she would be.
Almost 5 years later, still, no arrests. It makes you wonder if there are more pieces to this puzzle that just don't fit yet? Is there more to the story? Is someone lying to protect someone else? If so, who and why?
Peter Hyatt says, "They need to link together all the circumstantial evidence, including the cell phone tracings, including using the interviews. When enough of those factors come together, circumstantial evidence can convict someone, rightfully. Given the passage of time, I think most people are reasonably sure, most people being the investigators, what caused Hailey's death. It's a matter of proving it."
The investigation into Hailey's death and disappearance has changed hands several times. Each new team starts from the beginning but neither has been able to come up with anything new. Clint has some choice words for those investigators.
"I want justice for my daughter. That's their job! I don't know if I can look at them and tell them to get off their ass and do something," he exclaimed.
We also asked him what he would say to Hailey, if he could? His response?
"I would just look at her, in her eyes and give her the biggest hug in the world. I wouldn't need to say anything. I miss her," Clint said sobbingly.