escambia county cold case

Florida Cold Case: William Ernest Thompson, Identified By Belt Buckle

On January 23rd, 1985, the body of an adult male, a victim of a murder, was found in the area of west Klondike Road and Wild Lake Boulevard.

The Escambia County Sheriff’s Office released details about the victim’s location and other identifying factors to the public. Years passed, but no tips on the case.

The ECSO placed his story on their website labeled “John Doe”. In 2018, a person who was searching for their missing family member, read the story on the ECSO website, and contacted cold case investigators.

The thing that stuck out to the person the most was the victim’s belt buckle with the hand-engraved initials “W.T.”. The person felt this could have been their missing uncle, whose last known location was in Escambia County near the same time John Doe’s body was discovered.

ECSO investigators contacted the Medical Examiner’s office and used a sample of the tipster’s DNA with DNA from John Doe.

They sent the samples to the University of North Texas to be analyzed. The results of the test revealed, John Doe was actually William Ernest Thompson (DOB:4/15/35).

William Ernest Thompson

The last time William Thompson made contact with his family was on September 23rd 1983. He called his mother from an unknown location on Pensacola Beach.

A missing person’s report was never filed with the ECSO. His case is being actively worked as a homicide.

“This is another example of the never-ending quest for justice. While we haven’t yet solved the homicide. It is a step forward and can give the family some closure until the case is solved.” – Chief Deputy Chip Simmons

If you have any information about William Thompson homicide, call Crime Stoppers at 433-STOP or the ECSO at 436-9620.


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