UPDATE, June 28, 2023: “Charges dropped against Shawn Adkins in Hailey Dunn murder case“
On December 28, 2010, 13-year-old Hailey Dunn of Colorado City, Texas, was reported missing by her mother when she failed to return home. Her stepfather, Shawn Adkins, told police that on December 27, Hailey told him she would go to her father’s home and then stay the night at a friend’s house. Police later learned that Hailey did neither.
Hailey’s brother last saw his sister on December 26, 2010, around 9 pm.
Soon after Hailey’s disappearance, police named Adkins as a person of interest by police. Adkins and Hailey’s mother, Billie Jean Dunn, failed polygraph tests during the initial investigation.
Months went by, and still, there was no sign of Hailey. Authorities conducted massive searches in and around Colorado City but found no evidence of the young girl. More than 100 billboards were set up with Hailey’s picture and information about the case along Texas interstates. Her case received local and national media coverage.
On February 25, 2011, authorities found thousands of obscene pictures involving animals and children on a memory stick found in Dunn’s home and on a computer in Adkins’ mother’s home.
In March 2011, Dunn was arrested after police said she lied to officers attempting to serve a search warrant on Adkins.
According to CNN affiliate KTAB, authorities obtained search warrants for the home of person of interest Shawn Adkins’ grandmother in Scurry County, Texas and for Adkins’ body.
When they went to Dunn’s house to execute the warrant for Adkins, who was her boyfriend and the last person known to have seen Hailey alive before she was reported missing on December 27, she allegedly lied to officers about where he was.
The drug charge was reportedly related to prescription medication obtained without a proper prescription. (Loiaconi)
In March 2013, Curtis Lloyd contacted authorities after finding human remains 20 miles away near Lake J.B. Thomas in Scurry County, Texas. Those remains were later confirmed to be those of Hailey Dunn.
Lloyd told KTXS that he found a skull, a tooth, and a femur, along with blue warmups that Hailey Dunn, then 13, was believed to have been wearing when she disappeared in late December 2010 (KTXS).
Despite finding her remains, police have not arrested anyone for the disappearance and death of Hailey. Adkins remains the only person of interest in her case after telling different stories to the police.
Dunn and Adkins have denied involvement in Hailey’s disappearance and death.
Loiaconi, Stephen. “Mother Of Missing Teen Hailey Dunn Arrested.” HLNtv.com. N.p., 2015. Web. 27 Dec. 2015.
KTXS. “Man Who Found Hailey Dunn’s Remains Likely Won’t Receive Colorado City Reward”. N.p., 2015. Web. 27 Dec. 2015.
True Crime Diva’s Thoughts
I remember this case because of all the media attention it brought. Hailey was a beautiful little girl and did not deserve what happened to her.
So what do I think about all of it?
Well, I think it’s safe to say that Adkins knows more than he’s telling, and so does Hailey’s mom, Billie Jean. Both Dunn and Adkins failed polygraph tests during the initial investigation. Adkins quit his job the day Hailey disappeared. Adkins told investigators during the polygraph that they would find Hailey in Scurry County, and they did. It was the only part of the test that read he was speaking the truth.
According to KDBD, “affidavits say Adkins had previously threatened Billie and Hailey’s life back in February of 2010. Documents about serial killers were also found in Billie’s home, where Adkins lives.”
And let’s not forget the child pornography found in Dunn’s home and on Adkins’ mom’s computer. He, or they, as in both Adkins and Dunn, obviously had a sick fantasy. The question is: Did fantasy become a reality?
Some people believe that BOTH Dunn and Adkins participated in the rape and murder of Hailey. It has also been said that Dunn saw Hailey as a sexual rival, meaning that Adkins was more interested sexually in Hailey than Dunn. So, was Hailey drugged, raped, and then murdered by her mother and Adkins? Or just Adkins? Where was Dunn on December 27, 2010?
In a couple of articles, I read that Dunn and Adkins had a New Year’s Eve party after Hailey went missing. I can tell you that if my kid was missing, I wouldn’t be celebrating anything. I’d be worried sick about my child and out there looking for her. So, the fact that they had this party does not make them look good at all.
Here’s a video from a local station with a good timeline of events.
I think Adkins makes the most logical suspect (so far, he is the ONLY suspect named by police) because 1) he lived with Hailey and was the last person seen with her, 2) he had threatened her and her mother months before she went missing, and 3) he enjoyed child pornography. If that was a fantasy and he lived with a child, it’s possible he acted out those fantasies.
Or maybe Hailey found something on Adkins that Adkins didn’t want anyone to know, like drugs or child pornography, for example.
Or, Dunn and Adkins murdered Hailey. This cannot be ruled out unless there is proof Dunn is innocent.
If you look at images of Adkins after Hailey’s disappearance, you will notice how happy he looks. He is not crying and does not even appear to be sad. Rather, he appears to be enjoying the media attention.
There is also this interview in the video below, in which, in my opinion, it appears that he is smirking (and lying) throughout the whole thing, and I think he’s a bit nervous, too. The reporter was pretty awesome in this clip, lol.
I don’t know what happened to Hailey, but I am positive this was not an abduction/murder committed by a stranger. Hailey’s killer was known to her. And while we technically don’t know if Hailey was murdered or not, I think it’s high up there as the manner of death.
When I first wrote my thoughts on this case, I didn’t think Dunn had anything to do with her daughter’s disappearance. But then I did more reading on it, and Dunn’s actions after Hailey went missing. I couldn’t help but change my mind after that. I don’t want to believe that a mother could take part in such a vicious crime, but we know it has happened many times before.
Dunn and Adkins are no longer together. They broke up in 2012. Dunn has since stated that she believes Adkins had something to do with Hailey’s death. I think that’s a given.