MIAMI (CBS4) – The name of the book is, “Bringing Adam Home.” It is a recounting of one of the most high profile murder cases in the country—that of Adam Walsh. Two South Florida authors have written a dramatic account of the search for a killer they say ended 27 years after the boy’s death.
Walsh was six years old when he was kidnapped in July, 1981 from a Hollywood store across the street from the Hollywood Police Department. A frantic manhunt followed. The child’s decapitated head was found a few weeks later in a canal near Vero Beach. Drifter and criminal Ottis Toole was long suspected but never officially charged in the case. Indeed, no one was ever officially charged.
The writer of the book, “Bringing Adam Home”, is Les Standiford, who teaches at FIU. He said, “(The book) tells the story of what one cop did that hundreds of cops before could not—solve the 27 year old case of Adam Walsh.”
That cop is the book’s co-author, former Miami Beach detective Joe Matthews. Matthews told CBS4’s Michael Williams, “The whole case file was made public in 1996. I really believe I might have been the only one that read it, every single page of the 10,000 pages, and put it in some kind of logical order.”
After countless fresh interviews and a fresh look at the case Matthews concluded that all signs definitively pointed to Ottis Toole, including blood evidence found in his car. Matthews said, “There was a blood transfer from Adam’s face that (happened) when he (Toole) admitted throwing the head he had decapitated on the floorboard.”
In late 2008 the Hollywood Police Department announced the case closed and named Toole the killer of Adam Walsh. Toole had died 12 years earlier, in prison for another crime. But for parents John and Reve Walsh justice in the name of their son had finally been done.