• Sun, Jan 12 - 5:00 pm ET

Family Of Boy Killed 34 Years Ago Use A Unique Tool To Help Find Murderer – Twitter

Bill ComeansThe family of a boy who was murdered at age 14 over 34 years ago is using Twitter to find the killer. While this might seem like a strange way to go about it, Bill Comeans‘ family is desperate and are hoping to keep his name and story alive through social media to help crack this cold case.

A little over 34 years ago, on January 7th, 1980, Comeans was found a mere block away from his home in Columbus, Ohio. He had been strangled by his own scarf. To this day, the killer has not been found, so this year his younger sister Kathleen decided to set up a Twitter account in his name to bring attention to the case.

So far Kathleen has posted dozens of tweets describing Bill’s murder and his family’s torment.

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Kathleen also gave a heart wrenching interview recently with 10TV:

“I miss him everyday. When I was growing up, I followed him around everywhere, I was his little shadow. I can remember the night that we found out, the same feelings are there.”

The scariest part of this story is that Bill had been allegedly attacked two times before his final, fatal encounter, but had managed to get free. He wasn’t able to see the perpetrator’s face either time, however, so nothing could be done. After his death, the Comeans family also received numerous threats in the mail, many of which threatened a similar fate for other children on the block.

According to Franklin County Sheriff’s deputies, there are no new leads in the case, but the family is optimistic that new technology may be able to help solve the case eventually.

My heart aches for this family. Many of the tweets are difficult to read, and the overall feeling I get from the account is lingering anguish and pain. Kathleen obviously loved her brother very much, and I hope for her sake (and the rest of the family) that they can find peace, whether Bill’s killer is found or not.

Anyone with any information on Bill Comeans’ murder is being urged to contact the Franklin County Sheriff’s Department in Columbus Ohio.

(Images: Twitter)

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  • Mel

    My initial reaction is that it’s super creepy to tweet in the name and voice of a dead child, but who am I to judge? If it helps them find the killer, then who the hell cares, right? I wish them success and some level of peace.

    • Gangle

      I don’t know.. I guess in a way it is, but I think maybe it is to remind people that he was a real person who existed and mattered, not just a cold case, and that even though the crime happened so long ago solving this crime is still important. Giving someone who cannot speak for themselves a voice, if you will.

    • Mel

      We’ve all met the internet, right? I think it’s likely that it will attract far more prurient interest, trolls, and TV interviews for the family than it will actual tips. I want tot believe that the family will not turn around and become celebrities off of this, but we’ve all seen the opposite so many times. I wish them sincere luck and I know that when they started this their intentions were pure. But I don’t want to be around when they start working the talk show circuit, Simon & Schuster calls with a book deal, and Lifetime offers them a reality show.

    • Gangle

      In the part of the world where I live a young boy was kidnapped and never seen again. His parents did everything in their power to keep his name and his disappearance in the media, even though the trail went cold and there was no new evidence. Many people have felt that this family should just give up, let it go and try to move on. Many years later, they have found his body (confirmed by dna), laid him to rest and his killer has been charged and faces trial. Along the way the public has been made aware of child safety etc. This would not have happened without his families efforts. At what point do you think it is appropriate to give up on a loved one?

    • Mel

      I’m not sure where I said anyone should “give up” on their loved one? That’s a personal decision, obviously.

  • AP

    As much as I hope this helps put pressure on the police to finally try to solve this cold case if at all possible, I can’t help but wonder about the psychological state of a 40+ year old woman who’s Tweeting from the persona of her long-dead brother. Losing a loved one to an unsolved murder is incredibly traumatic, but this seems incredibly unhealthy and I really hope she gets professional help to process this loss.

    • Gangle

      Based on some of the tweets (“I was a real person. I existed. I mattered.” “people thought my story had been solved. It hasn’t”) are less about some woman trying to inhabit her dead brothers personality, or attempt to have a direct link with the dead, and more to do with driving the message home to the public that just because this happened so long ago it doesn’t mean that it should be swept under the carpet and her brother should be treated as if he didn’t exist, or that his crime no longer needs to be solved.

  • KaeTay

    I think they are getting their hopes up too high. Forensics and someone coming forward is how a crime this old is solved. I’m from that area people come and go so often from the area especially with a military base on the outskirts. It’s nice that they still have hope and my heart goes out to them. I think maybe the police should reconsider a look at their paperwork and evidence.. a fresh pair of eyes.

  • Lithy

    I don’t know what it would be like to have someone I loved murdered, and then for the murderer to never be found. I feel like there is a sense of closure or justice that is taken away from the family. It’s different, but if it was my brother or anyone I loved for that matter I’d do it. If someone who has information or the actual murderer themselves feels a sense of guilt and is prompted to come forward because of it, then more power to her.

  • LyndseyUselton
  • Aimee Mann

    Weird way to bring attention to it…seem like she’s trolling to me. Pretending to be a dead person.