Thomas Dean Gibson
What you need to know:
Born on July 5th, 1988
Disappeared on March 18th, 1991 from Azalea, Oregon
Has brown hair and brown eyes.
Goes by "Tommy'
Has a gap between his front teeth
Was last seen wearing a purple sweatshirt, gray pants and black and white checkered sneakers
What we know about the case:
We know that Tommy was last seen playing in his front yard around 11:30am on March 18th, 1991.
We know that his father was out for a jog around the same time, and shot a stray cat while out.
When he return back from his job, he discovered Thomas had disappeared.
Thomas' sister claimed to have seen an unidentified couple abduct him in the beginning stages of the investigation.
There are a few different opinions on what happened to Thomas - two of which being that his father was involved, and the other being the stranger abduction.
Theory one is that Thomas was accidentally hit by a stray bullet when his father, Larry, shot the stray cat. Theory two is that Thomas was abused by his father, and that day Larry lost his temper and beat Thomas to death.
in 1994, Thomas' parents divorced. After this, his mother and sister claimed that Larry was abusive, and that the sister saw Larry beat Thomas to death, place his body in a garbage bag an disposed of it. This was enough evidence to charge Larry with second degree murder, of which he was subsequently convicted. He maintains his innocence to this day.
From my humble point of view:
I'm so torn. There is just something about Larry Gibson that makes me believe that he didn't do this. He was the deputy sheriff at the time, so I feel that if he had hit him with a stray bullet, he would have cracked and confessed by now. He was convicted of murder - a manslaughter charge would have been an easier pill to swallow in the face of charges like that. This leads me to rule that theory out in my mind.
However, time and time again we see cases where a parent has abused and murdered his child.Was his sister so scared of Larry that she lied initially? Or was she manipulated by her mother to change her story? I really feel for the sister either way. Either she saw someone abduct her brother, or she watched her father murder him. Horrible memories to have.