365 Days of Texas True Crime: Hailey Dunn Update
If you've lived in this area as long as I have you already know about this one and if you haven't this short little recap doesn't do the case any justice. There's plenty out there to be found on the internet and it would take a while to get through all of it, so if you want me to do a run down I'll work one up but in the meantime here is a very, very quick summary. I am not a professional reader of information, transcriber of information, decipherer of information nor am I a professional writer or researcher. So if you see an inaccuracy or something I've missed, please feel free to let me know.
Billie Jean Dunn reporter her 13 year old daughter missing around 3 p.m. on December 28th 2011 from their Colorado City home. It was very early on in the investigation for the missing girl that Hailey Dunn’s mothers boyfriend at the time, Shawn Adkins, was a person of interest. There were all kinds of rumors about what might have happened to Hailey and all kinds of theories about who was responsible.
The public was made aware that Hailey’s mother and her live-in boyfriend gave police contradictory information about when she disappeared. The boyfriend told Billie Dunn that he last saw the middle school cheerleader on December 27th and that she had told him that she was going to walk to her dads home just down the street, and then to a friend’s house to spend the night. She didn’t show up at either location. Adkins complained that the police misquoted him in the news, saying that Adkins said Hailey was promiscuous and used drugs. Billie Dunn asked Adkins to move out on January 5th, 2011, with all the negative press they were getting and the rumors that were flying and the massive amount of speculation regarding Adkins involvement, most people would say she should’ve done it sooner. From the start though Billie didn’t think there was anyway that Shawn could have had anything to do with her daughter’s disappearance. Shawn himself denied publicly any involvement and was quoted as saying that he would “never ever do anything to harm Hailey”. He told reporters that he was praying daily for Hailey’s safe return. Countless searches are conducted for the teen by foot, horseback, helicopter and with cadaver dogs. Orange ribbons flooded the town. Posters and signs with pictures of Hailey were everywhere. Vigils were held, landfills were searched, leads were followed but they just couldn’t find hide nor hair, as they say, of Hailey. With the information put out in the news, it seems obvious who was responsible yet no arrests were made. While all of this was going on, literally days after Hailey went missing, Billie and Shawn had a New Year’s Eve party at the house that Hailey should’ve been at. Billie Dunn would later say that in no way was there a party as the police were saying. She said there were just a few friends over, having drinks…..on a holiday that is normally celebrated with a party right? Ok….. A few friends over for drinks even without it being New Year’s Eve sounds like a party, but that’s just my opinion. Then it came out in the news that Billie Dunn and Shawn Adkins were fascinated with brutal crimes and sadistic sex. There was a search of the home Hailey lived in that turned up at least 16 different articles related to sex crimes and serial killings, some that involved adolescents. It was said that Billie Dunn left a polygraph testing because she was high and that during one of Adkins’s polygraphs he told investigators that Hailey could be found in Scurry County, just north of Mitchell County. Adkins had relatives in Mitchell County. He too was said to have become frustrated with the questioning and walked out however later Adkins told the press that he left on the advise of his attorney. Adkins told police he last saw Hailey on December 27th. Witnesses said Adkins left work that day at 6:10 a.m. Adkins told the investigators that he headed straight to his moms house in Big Springs, 40 miles west of Colorado City. We all know phone records don’t lie and when investigators pulled Adkins’s phone records they showed that Adkins had placed calls from his phone between 6:35 a.m. and 6:56 a.m. in Colorado City. Hailey would have been home alone during that time. There was so much going around about Adkins and Hailey’s mom at the time it just seemed so unlikely for anyone else to be responsible. At one point there was a lady in jail that tried to day she knew where Hailey was but as often times happens, it turned out to all be a lie. Eventually remains were found on March 16th, 2013, near Lake J.B. Thomas that were identified as belonging to Hailey Dunn.
On Monday, June 14th, 2021, 11 years since the small town cheerleader went missing, an arrest was finally made. Shawn Casey Adkins was arrested in Howard County (Sweetwater-where I was born) and charged with murder. He is being held on a $2 million bond.
There is so much you can read about on this case and trust me I did. The one thing I never stopped thinking about was the obvious, Shawn was the last person to see her. I guess we will all find out together so let’s just hope he goes to trial soon.