The Justice Files: Two More Boys Go missing, Five boys Pt. 4
SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – Kim Peterson and Graeme Cunningham had nothing in common.
They did not know each other and lived at a distance from each other.
But the only thing they had in common was that the man who kidnapped them lived near each of them.
Peterson’s disappearance has been investigated by South Salt Lake Police. The former detective who was on the case agreed to speak about the investigation, but did not want his name revealed.
“I knew he frequented the rink there,” said the former detective. “(He) mostly played a little pool.”
The Ritz Classic Bowling Alley was a haven for the 11-year-old. According to the former detective, Peterson had a difficult family life.
“Talking to his stepfather, I got the impression Kim didn’t like being at home very much,” he said.
When Peterson went missing, his parents learned he wanted to sell his roller skates to a man at the rink. But according to the police, his parents wanted to meet this buyer.
Peterson returned to the bowling alley, but never returned. The former detective said they never found out who this man was, but they continued to question the stepfather.
“We got the notion that Kim was a threat to her marriage to Kim’s mother,” he said. “Of course that raised another red flag.”
The former detective said he found the stepfather’s notebook, implicating him even more.
“We had no proof to get him in,”
Peterson was never seen again and his case remained unsolved until 1983.
It was then that Graeme Cunninham also disappeared.
“In July 1983 Graeme Cunningham, who I believe was 13 at the time, disappeared,” said Creighton Horton, the former assistant district attorney for Salt Lake.
At the time, Cunninham was traveling to Disneyland with a neighbor named Roger Downs and his so-called stepson.
“And then he disappeared two days ago,” Horton said. “He took a phone call from someone and then said, ‘I’m coming right back, I’m going around the corner’ or something and never came back,” Horton said.
Three days after his disappearance, the first reports alerted the public, with police telling reporters that Cunningham “should not be treated as a fugitive”.
Cunningham’s neighbor friend Roger Downs and his son left for California and returned shortly after the disappearance. Downs claimed he had never seen the boy. He even joined forces to find Cunningham.
“He sat in my house, just like us, to make my life easier,” his mother Shona Cunningham said in 1987. “(He wanted to) help find Graeme.”
A month earlier, Troy Ward had also gone missing and had not yet been found. Some thought that the two disappearances were linked.
In 1983, the sheriff told reporters, “We have nothing to show that this is the case, but we also have nothing to rule it out.”
In a routine move, Salt Lake City police brought Downs and his so-called stepson to headquarters for questioning.
And this is where the investigation took a dramatic turn. On Friday, in the final episode of “Five Boys,” the devil of Salt Lake City is exposed.