Middle Georgia Cold Cases: Where is Hal Dunn?

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ROBERTA, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – In January 1987, Hal Dunn went missing after running away from sheriff’s deputies and no one has seen him since.Back then, Hal Dunn enjoyed country living in Crawford County. He was a hunter, a fisherman, and at the end of the day a “mama’ boy.”

“Any time he needed money, she’d give it to him. If she didn’t give it to him, she’d expect me to give it to him because she wasn’t home,” Brenda Bassett, Dunn’s older sister, said.

She says although the 23-year-old was fun and loving — he had a dark secret.

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“He said they were doing drugs, they were shooting up. I mean Hal did have a problem with drugs and stuff. We didn’t know how bad,” Bassett said.

Then sheriff, Kerry Dunaway, pulled Dunn and a friend, Richard Reese, over on what was Bostick Road. They ran off into nearby woods, and Dunn was never heard from again.

“They were doing drugs and both boys took off running,” Bassett said.

“His brother came to the sheriff’s office and reported him missing on January 28, 1987 at 8 p.m,” Crawford Sheriff Lewis Walker said. 

“I just don’t believe that anything happened to him while he was in the woods because he knew his way home,” Dunn’s sister Bassett said.

“The sheriff called for back up. Several units in surrounding counties, Bibb showed up,” Walker said.

“We saw the police cars go down there, we saw them come out and they had a wrecker and they were pulling a truck,” Bassett said.

A day later, Reese, who was driving the truck, turned himself into the sheriff’s office, apologizing for running and worried about his friend.

“He said that they were together and they did separate. Once they separated, he didn’t see him no more,” Walker said.

Hal was gone…seeming without a trace, leaving behind a family and a mother heartbroken.

“She would talk about him every single day. On his birthday, January when it happened. She’d always talk about it and she took it to her death bed,” Bassett said.

Hal and Brenda’s mother died several years ago — never giving up, looking, hoping, waiting for justice.

Brenda says she doesn’t know if Hal is still alive, but if he isn’t, she hopes he’s in a better place.

“I’m hoping that he’s up there and she got to see him, that way you know she’s a peace now,” Bassett said.

Until clues turn up, this case will remain open as deputies continue to search for Hal Dunn.

Reese has since died. Sheriff Lewis Walker says anyone who can remember anything about that January day in 1987, please call the Crawford County Sheriff’s Office at 4478-836-3116.

41NBC is beginning a new series revisiting cold cases that date back decades – trying to bring closure to families in middle Georgia.