Discussion in 'Cold Cases' started by PastTense, May 21, 2019.
Georgia police seek new info in 1988 cold case murder of 8-year-old Roswell boy
Informative post on Roswell Police Dept Facebook page. Really great comments too from people remembering the incident.
Roswell Police Department
Wednesday, May 15, 2019 marks the thirty-first anniversary of the homicide of Joshua Harmon. Joshua was 8-years-old at the time of his death. The Roswell Police Department, with the support of the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office, is asking the public to help to generate new leads for this case. We are seeking any information that may help Joshua’s family get answers.
On Sunday, May 15, 1988, 8-year-old, Joshua Harmon was reported missing to the Roswell Police Department by his mother. At the time of his murder, Joshua’s family lived in an apartment complex called “Roundtree Apartments”. Today, it is known as “River Crossing at Roswell”.
Joshua regularly played outside in the area of his apartment building and the other buildings in the immediate vicinity. He searched for turtles around the lake in the complex and played in the “fort” in the woods behind his building. On May 15th, Joshua had been playing outside, with friends and alone, all day. Joshua’s mother recounts that he was in and out of the apartment throughout the day for various reasons. When Joshua’s mother started making dinner she asked her husband, Joshua’s stepfather, to let Joshua know to stay close to home. When Joshua’s stepfather could not find him, Joshua’s mother called the Roswell Police.
A neighbor informed the family that Joshua had stopped by their residence at approximately 7:00 PM to ask if his child, Joshua’s friend, could come outside to play. The family was spending time together and eating dinner so the boy could not come outside. Joshua told the neighbor that he was going to be waiting for the neighbor boy in the woods at the fort where the children commonly played together. This is the last reported sighting of Joshua alive.
After extensive searches over the next nearly 48 hours, Joshua Harmon’s lifeless body was located in the woods of the apartment complex on Tuesday, May 17, 1988. Joshua was beaten and strangled to death. Joshua was buried under loose dirt and pine straw. Logs were placed on top of his body to conceal him from immediate discovery.
Evidence was collected during the investigation that is still available. There have been incredible advancements in forensic technology since 1988. But science is not all that can be used to catch this killer. It is the hope of the Roswell Police Department and the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office that the community will help with this case so that Joshua’s murderer can be identified and held accountable for this heinous crime.
Along with reviewing all of the available evidence, the Roswell Police Department is reaching out to witnesses from the original investigation. We are also looking for new witnesses that may know, or have heard, something about this case over the years. We are asking for anyone who may have any information about this case to please call Crime Stoppers or the Roswell Police Department to share that information. In the last 31 years, we believe that the killer may have spoken to someone about this incident and disclosed their involvement.
If you have information and would like to speak with an investigator, please call Detective Jennifer Bennett at 770-640-4380 or she can be reached by email at email@example.com
Information on this case can be submitted anonymously to the Crime Stoppers Atlanta tip line at 404-577-TIPS (8477) or online at www.StopCrimeATL.com. Persons do not have to give their name or any identifying information to be eligible for a CASH reward for the arrest and indictment of the suspect
They do not mention if Joshua was s. assaulted or not, if not- what would be the likely motive for killing him?
Do they think another child might be responsible? speculation, imo.
interesting case. this is the first ive heard of it.
seems to me that stepdad has to be suspect #1. I am assuming he was investigated and cleared?
A few more links if we need them.
Roswell Police asking for leads in 1988 homicide
He was beaten and strangled in 1988. His murderer might still be in Roswell.
Roswell police are still searching for clues in the 1988 murder of an 8-year-old boy | The Georgia Sun
When I first saw this thread, I immediately thought of the Levi Frady case that happened 9 years later. He was 11 y/o when he disappeared and later found murdered. Joshua lived in Roswell which is 20 miles SW of Cumming from where Levi was taken. It is a straight shot on Hwy 19.
Serial killer Gary Michael Hilton who resembles the drawn sketch in Levi's case lived and worked in the area. I wonder if he has been considered.
GA - GA - Levi Frady, 11, Cumming, 22 Oct 1997
Gary M Hilton
Interesting, in the fox5 video link @ 1:35 his mother states that someone removed all his clothes but I haven't seen that specific detail in any of the above posted articles. I have seen numerous times that his body was covered by logs to prevent detection.
Was that something previously announced?
The Roswell Police Dept Facebook page linked above has comments from people remembering the search. Some are very detailed like the video you mentioned.
Gone, but not forgotten.
It was interesting reading some of the comments from key players back in the day.
DNA testing has come so far since then. I hope that can be revisited to give some answers and justice for Mom, before they meet again ❤️️
Joshua Randall Harmon (1979-1988) - Find A Grave...
Sexual assault indicated?
I totally missed seeing all the articles and pictures that were embedded in your post when I first read it.
A later web search found this link which includes the same articles.
Hey guys - I actually registered for this case and to be honest, am excited that the PD is finally doing something public after all these decades. I lost track of this for a few months just due to life, so it was a nice surprise to see something about this.
Originally, I did a write up for it for r/UnresolvedMysteries over a year ago after the name was suggested asking for more information. I ended up in a rabbit hole as the only way to get info on the case was to subscribe to the local paper for back issues. There was literally nothing about this case anywhere online outside of a more recent, and rather haunting YouTube video that described the bare bones of the case. Later on, another user was able to get images and make an album of all the newspaper articles detailing the case so that the rest of the users could see them and the album is still up on my original post (under the same name on Reddit), which is were that Imgur album yall found comes from.
According to his mother, Cherie Harmon, her son was found with socks and one shoe and these were taken by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI). At this point, they seem to have been lost, so I'm hoping that they have other viable samples for testing. The GBI is extraordinarily unhelpful to talk to, but Detective Bennet, who I spoke to a while back, was more forthcoming. She was adamant the case was still open and that they hoped with recent improvements in genealogical research and DNA testing that an arrest would be made, though if evidence has been lost, that hope is a bit diminished.
It was interesting that even with my post that a number of people commented about having been in the area at that time. Even more so with the Facebook post by the Roswell PD about the case with people talking about their involvement and experiences with the case after all these decades. It was the GBI at the time that limited public information and kept things close to the chest, and when the stepfather was cleared (who is still a close family friend), the case disappeared and nothing was spoken of for decades. I truly believe that someone out there knows something, saw something that could be the lead to get to the person involved and this could have been solved a long time ago if it hadn't been kept so quiet.
The GBI still, after 31 years, does not list Joshua Harmon on their unsolved homicides page even though they were intimately involved with the original investigation.