04-25-2015, 09:59 PM #1
TN - Joshua Walden, 10, Chattanooga, 10 Dec 2000
I looked for a thread on this and didn't see one, which seems very surprising.
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Hamilton Co. Cold Case: Who Killed Joshua Walden?
April 24 2015, 08:33 AM
Investigators are turning to new resources to help solve a Hamilton County child murder case. For nearly 15 years, Joshua Walden's killer has not been brought to justice.
"The murderer is still out there and as long as I keep this memory alive then maybe this won't happen to another child," said Crystal Walden, the victim's older sister.
Her brother was just 10 years old when he went missing. The East Lake Elementary student was last seen riding his bicycle alone one Friday. He was reported missing the next day and on Sunday, December 10th, 2000, a horrific discovery. "Then, approximately 12 hours or so after it was reported, his body was discovered by his brother and some friends who were walking the neighborhood," said Sgt. Bill Phillips, of Chattanooga Police.
Phillips was among the Chattanooga detectives investigating. Josh's body was found up along a trail off 16th Avenue. Grisly details of how he was murdered were withheld for a year. Crystal first spoke with NewsChannel9 in 2001 after finding out that Josh was suffocated then covered with muriatic or hydrochloric acid.
"We are currently in communication with the TBI crime lab about some testing available today wasn't back then, new-type DNA testing," said Mathis.
Authorities will send things collected from the crime scene and ask for forensic testing that could provide clues for the TBI crime lab to decipher. Investigators are also turning to help on a broader scale.
04-25-2015, 10:35 PM #2
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Details you might miss if you skim the article:
- They never found his bicycle.
- LE doesn't think this crime was sexually-motivated.
- He was found 12 hours after he was reported missing.
- His body was found with no shoes or socks.
I've found a couple other recent articles.
Crimestoppers: Murder Of Joshua Lee Walden - Feb. 5, 2004
10-year-old Chattanooga boy's murder is still unsolved after 14 years - Dec. 11, 2014
Last edited by luckyseven; 04-25-2015 at 11:09 PM.
04-25-2015, 11:08 PM #3
I can't believe there isn't a thread for this. I must be missing it, right?!
This is an early article from The Chattanooga Daily Free Press. I paid $2.00 to access the archive for one day. :x They only have text versions of the issues pre-2000, so I'm just going to copy some of the info here for now.
<snipped> in order to comply with TOS.
Missing Joshua Walden, 10, discovered dead in East Lake
BY DUANE W. GANG
Monday, December 11, 2000
Chattanooga police found the body of a young boy Sunday afternoon in a wooded area off 16th Avenue in East Lake. Police identified the body as Joshua Lee Walden, a 10-year-old missing since Friday afternoon.
At about 12:30 p.m. Sunday, a group of children found the boy in area in the 3100 block of 16th Avenue near the East Lake Park, police said.
The body was taken to the Hamilton County Forensics Center, and an autopsy was expected to be performed today to determine the cause of death. Police said they do not know whether the boy was killed where his body was found or elsewhere.
It took police all afternoon to identify the body, leaving Johnny Walden, the boy's father, wanting answers.
Mr. Walden said another son, Jonathan, was among the group that found the body. Mr. Walden said Jonathan told him that the body was covered in leaves, and that he did not look at its face. "I don't want to think the worst," Mr. Walden said. "It can't be my boy. That's my baby."
The investigation is continuing.
04-25-2015, 11:15 PM #4
Hard to believe, but no, we didn't have a thread until now.
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04-27-2015, 10:18 AM #5
Here's some more info from a few different MSM articles with other details.
Chattanooga police detectives continue investigation Monday
Dec. 12, 2000
The body was in a depression in the ground and covered with leaves, police said.
Ed Buice, police media director, said investigators are waiting for autopsy results from the Hamilton County Medical Examiner's office. He said there was no apparent trauma to the body.
Mr. Buice added that police have not identified any suspects in the case.
When police located the body, officers did not permit Mr. Walden to attempt an identification.
Update on Dec. 10, 2001 - Officers release details one year after murder
Det. Mike Mathis said at a press conference that the information had been withheld, but it was now being brought forth in hopes it will help bring a break in the mysterious case.
Det. Mathis said investigators who first examined the body noticed there was something "very unusual." He said it appeared something had been poured on the body to make it appear it had been burned. He said the acid was poured after the boy had been killed.
He said acid was on the body, under the body, and on leaves nearby.
Det. Mathis said tests showed the material was a corrosive acid, similar to a type used in cleaning concrete or metal - as at a car body shop.
Det. Mathis also said that Joshua's socks and tennis shoes have been never found.
He said the family has been "extremely helpful" in working the case.
There were superficial abrasions on the nose and right side of the face.
Officials said Joshua was known to ride his bike near East Lake Park.
04-27-2015, 10:24 AM #6
The last article also stated that CPD was working with the FBI on this case. They looked for a related case but did not find any similar crimes nationwide.
They also had an FBI profiler provide a detailed description of what qualities the murderer might possess.
"The offender in this case lived or had spent a considerable amount of time in the East Lake neighborhood and was very familiar with the neighborhood. The offender probably experienced lifestyle changes such as moving his residence, changing jobs, possibly altering his appearance, trading vehicles and even his marital status could have changed before or after the criminal act. The analysis strongly suggested that law enforcement probably had contact already with the offender during the course of the investigation."
12-13-2015, 10:01 AM #7
The offender in this case lived or had spent a considerable amount of time in the East Lake neighborhood and was very familiar with the neighborhood. The offender probably experienced lifestyle changes such as moving his residence, changing jobs, possibly altering his appearance, trading vehicles and even his marital status could have changed before or after the criminal act. The analysis strongly suggested that law enforcement probably had contact already with the offender during the course of the investigation.
You may have the information we need to bring this case to a close. Call Crime Stoppers at 698-3333. The call is confidential and could earn you up to $1,000 in cash rewards.
Last edited by tlcya; 12-13-2015 at 10:24 AM.
12-13-2015, 10:20 AM #8
So he went missing on Friday, but was not reported missing until Saturday.? And it would have to be LATE Saturday, as the report also says he was discovered 12 hours after reported missing. One would assume the brother found him during daylight ours, right?
Why the delay in reporting him missing? He's only 10!Six-year-old Shannon Sherrill disappeared from her front yard in Thorntown, Indiana in October, 1986. Someone knows where she is......
12-13-2015, 10:30 AM #9
I wonder why he wasn't reported missing until the next day?Media thread for Abby and Libby.
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12-13-2015, 10:52 AM #10
12-13-2015, 10:57 AM #11
Just after midnight the morning of Saturday, December 9th, 2000, 17-year old Crystal Walden called police to report her 10-year old brother, Joshua Lee Walden, missing.
When he disappeared, Josh was wearing a red shirt and black jeans, riding a 20-inch Magnum bicycle which he had painted with a dull red paint.
Maybe the teen sister was in charge of keeping an eye on the kids or the parents were not at home at the time Joshua went missing. Maybe that cause the delay in reporting?
12-13-2015, 11:19 AM #12
From your link, tlcya:
The killer had poured Muriatic acid on the body.
An autopsy found superficial abrasions on Josh's nose and the right side of his face.
The investigation revealed Josh was fanatical about wearing shoes. He never took them off, not even when he went to bed. His parents would take off his shoes after he fell asleep and when woke up Josh would be mad to find his shoes removed.
However, the boy's body was left with the feet uncovered with no socks or shoes on or near the body.
Thank you to luckyseven, and tlcya for the work done on Joshua's case. I can't imagine his younger brother discovering his body, especially with the acid burns! I honestly don't know why there was such a long delay. With so many of the articles on his case archived (we are fortunate luckyseven made the effort to bring these articles forward for us), it's difficult to get a send of what was happening in "real time."
There are so many things about this case that stand out, I hope LE is able to make headway after all of these years. Someone knows something. I hope they come forward, and soon.....
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12-13-2015, 06:34 PM #13
The missing shoes and Joshua's preoccupation with keeping his shoes on seem to be a big clue. The perp has to be someone close enough to the family to have known that about Joshua. For some reason I feel like this was a youthful offender.
Last edited by Third Coast Gal; 12-13-2015 at 09:35 PM.
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