3. Was Levi Frady’s bicycle moved after he went missing?

Two former law enforcement officials have confirmed that the red bicycle Levi Frady, 11, was riding before he went missing Wednesday, Oct. 22, 1997, had been moved from wherever it was first found.

“There were no fingerprints on it, not even Levi’s,” said a former Dawson County Sheriff’s deputy who worked the case in 1997 with Sheriff Billy Carlisle. “It was wiped clean.”

Frady was less than a mile from his Forsyth County, Ga. home when he was allegedly abducted. Less than 16 hours later, his body was found in a remote, heavily wooded tract of Dawson Forest Wildlife Management area. He had been shot multiple times.

Additionally, a former Forsyth County Sheriff’s deputy, who was assigned to guard the bicycle after it was found on Little Mill Road early Thursday morning, Oct. 23, said he noticed something unusual.

“I crouched down and looked across the grass, and I could see footprints in the dew,” he said. “I knew it was a crime scene from the minute I got there.”

William Bearden, 11 at the time, first found Levi’s bicycle on his way to catch the school bus Thursday morning, Oct. 23, 1997.

“I think he was abducted right here,” said Bearden, who was 26-years-old when interviewed for a report conducted by CBS Atlanta, Jan. 12, 2012. According to Forsyth County tax records, a Bearden family resides on Little Mill Road near a narrow creek in a heavily wooden area not visible from any homes.

Bearden, however, was not the first to spot the bike.

According to an AJC report on Friday, Oct. 24, 1997, Laci Frady, the boy’s fraternal twin, spotted the bike Wednesday night while she and her mother, Marilyn Parkman, mounted their own search after Levi did not return home at 6:30 p.m. — the designated time, Laci Frady said Thursday (Oct. 23).

Laci later recalled that her mother simply didn’t react when they saw the bike, according to an Nov. 9, 1997 Atlanta Journal Constitution report.

Forsyth authorities initially believed they were investigating a missing child report until word reached deputies that a body matching the description of Levi Frady had been found 19 miles away by three deer hunters.

Yet, Levi Frady’s Burruss Mill home was not roped off as a crime scene. 

“People were all over the place — inside and out,” the FCSO deputy said. “It wasn’t until another six to eight days passed that they (GBI) went back and looked at the house.” 

Brief Sheriffs’ history

Sheriff Billy Carlisle is slated to retire in December after more than 20 years in law enforcement. He took office Jan. 1, 1997. Prior to his election, he worked for the sheriff’s department starting in 1985.

DCSO BADGEAccording to an Oct. 15, 2014 report in the Dawson News & Advertiser, Carlisle said that after nearly 20 years as sheriff, one unsolved case still haunts him — the murder of 11-year-old Levi Frady in Oct. 1997, nine months after he took office.

“I strongly believe it was somebody Levi knew and trusted,” he said. “That’s what my gut tells me. You go back and look and maybe some people didn’t tell us everything they knew because they were afraid they might be next.”

Forsyth County Sheriff Denny Hendrix took office Jan. 1, 1997. He served one term and was defeated by Ted Paxton in 2000. (An upcoming post examines problems inside both Forsyth and Dawson County sheriffs’ departments around the time of Frady’s disappearance).

Birthday milestone for Levi Frady

Levi Frady would have celebrated his 30th birthday March 6. What would he have been doing as the warm, spring sunlight streamed through the pine trees and illuminated the strawberry fields near his boyhood home? Maybe he would have shared cake and ice cream with his sister, or perhaps he would be a dad now and decide to take his own boys fishing or to play in the creek as he used to do when he was small.

This age progression photograph shows what Levi would have looked like at 30.

GBI pic 1LEVI HAZEL EYES, SMILING

NEXT UP: Find out what one of the hunters who found Levi’s body had to say.

BREAKING NEWS ALERT: CLICK HERE

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10 thoughts on “3. Was Levi Frady’s bicycle moved after he went missing?

  1. DAWSON AND FORSYTH COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE KNOWS WHO DONE THIS BUT BC OF WHO THEY ARE AND THEIR FAMILY NAME…THEY DIDN’T NOR WILL EVER PURSUE! CASE CLOSED–AN 11 YR OLD BOY SUFFERED AT THE HAND OF MONSTERS ALL BC OF “OTHER” PEOPLE IN HIS LIFE! MAY THEY ALL BURN IN HELL! I AM A CITIZEN OF DC–BORN AND RAISED–THE SHERIFF’S OFFICE IS A JOKE BOTH IN DAWSON AND FORSYTH! THIS SHOULD BE ABOUT “JUSTICE FOR LEVI ONLY” NOT HOW EVERY AGENCY HANDLED WHATEVER…U ALL SHOULD B E ASHAMED!!!

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  2. Please keep this story alive till justice is served do not forget about Levi frady !
    Please this is not about anyone’s feelings if it bothers you then you are going to just have to suck it up !
    Because this should not be just put away and forgotten !
    Praying for justice to be do !!!!

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  3. Just so everyone knows, this lady does not know anything new with this case. She is a newspaper journalist that is now out of a job. She was fired by Dawson County Newspaper. She is using this case as a publicity stunt to possibly land another job. She is not in this for the right reason. She will talk like she is, but we all know that actions speak louder than words.
    If she truly cared about helping this case, she would have reached out to the families first. Obviously we all want answers, but there is a way to go about doing this type of thing, and the way she is doing this is the wrong way.

    To everyone reading this article,

    Please, I am begging you, please do not share this on facebook. The more views this lady gets, the happier she is, and the more the family suffers. We all miss Levi and would be thrilled to see this case be solved, but all this is doing is causing strife between the family. It is bringing up heartache. It is bringing up a truly horrific nightmare. This is not fun for anyone.

    I pray that God will bring forward the person that killed Levi. That He will deal with their heart and that they will come forward and confess. I also pray for God to give everyone wisdom when you are reading this article. Think about the heartache that the family sees each time this article is shared on facebook against their will. (and yes, it is against their will.)

    God Bless!

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    1. The woman that wrote this didn’t get fired. The Dawson News and Advertiser got purchased by another paper. Do you even live around here? She’s trying to bring justice to the table.

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      1. The lady from the Dawson newspaper does photos of the scenery around the county now. I do live around here, and neither of you know what you’re talking about.

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    2. But this is NOT about the family. It is about Levi. There is a lot of shady things with this case including some of the families actions.

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