After spending 50 years behind bars, William Huff has been released into the Arizona community, and citizens are concerned for their children's well-being.
Known as "The Phantom" serial killer, Huff abducted and killed 2 young girls from their small Arizona town.
Now, completely unaware, neighborhood children are walking back and forth in front of Huff's home. As it turns out there are no restrictions placed upon him regarding his contact with children when he was released.
In a short interview with Huff, a reporter was able to grasp the state-of-mind of his ex-con.
“You understand why people are nervous about you being out of prison?” the reporter said.
“Yeah. Because of my case and the stuff that happened to me,” Huff said,
“You mean the stuff that you did,” the reporter said.
“Yeah, yeah yeah,” Huff replied.
The story begins in 1967 in a small town of Sierra Vista. There was a population of only 5,000 at the time and most residents were there because of the Army post, Fort Huachuca, being close by.
“Sierra Vista at that time did not have a violent crime problem,” said David Santor, who was 22 years old at the time.
That all changed in the spring when the community was struck by a tragedy.
“The element of universal trust was gone,” said Santor.
On Sunday April 30, 7-year-old Cindy Clelland was walking down the street of her neighborhood looking for bottles to exchange at the store for candy.
That was the last time the blond-haired girl was seen alive.
3-days later, a search team discovered her naked, lifeless, mutilated body in a dessert area 120 into the boundary of Fort Huachuca.
“Throughout the three days she was missing, they would find, like, clothes and underpants, and they would bring it to my mom and say, ‘Is this Cindy’s?’” said Darlene Roi, who is Cindy’s older sister.
Roi remembers that her father was deployed overseas at the time, serving as a sergeant in the Army.
“The Red Cross had to track him down in Vietnam, brought him back while the military was looking for Cindy. And on the third day, when my dad happened to arrive was the same day they found Cindy,” said Roi.
One week after the body of Cindy was discovered a handwritten letter arrived at Sierra Vista Police headquarters.
It read: “I am The Phantom. You have found my first victim. My next victim lives on Steffan Street. 9 yrs old. (Fools!!!)”
Police were able to identify the 9-year-old mentioned in the letter and provided around-the-click protection for her.
Residents of the small town now feared for their children's safety and did whatever they could to keep their loved ones safe.
“People went out and bought guns. People did everything they could to make sure that they knew where their children were every minute of every day,” said Santor.
Police followed all the leads they had, until they hit a dead end.
Continue to read about the second crime.