William Charles Cordes

1 AP
Left: William, circa 1984;
Right: Age-progression to age 48 (circa 2016)


Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance

  • Missing Since: March 23, 1984 from Auburn, California
  • Classification: Endangered Missing
  • Date Of Birth: July 11, 1968
  • Age: 15 years old
  • Height and Weight: 5'6 - 5'7, 125 - 135 pounds
  • Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian male. Brown hair, hazel eyes. William has a birthmark on his neck. His nicknames are Bill and Billy. He has a capped front tooth and he had stitches in one of his feet at the time of his disappearance.
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    Details of Disappearance

    In 1984, William was residing at a group home, The Children's Home Society, on New Airport Road in Auburn, California. He was sent to live in the home as part of his sentence for stealing $8 worth of beer from a business. William and some other residents of the home sneaked out and attended a party in a town near Auburn on March 23, 1984. The boys drank beer until 5:00 or 6:00 a.m. before leaving for home. Their vehicle ran out of gasoline on Interstate 80 near Dry Creek Road. William stayed behind with the car while his companions walked to purchase fuel. His friends discovered that William had disappeared while they were at the gas station. He has never been heard from again.

    William's original missing person report was canceled for unknown reasons. As a result, police did not begin to investigate his disappearance until several years had passed. Due to confidentiality laws, the authorities were not able to get any information about William or his companions from the group home, but William's siblings located and questioned them. The companions claimed they could not remember anything significant about the night William disappeared, although that evening he did break up with his girlfriend. His family believes he met with foul play and is now deceased.

    William was a student at Golden Sierra High School at the time of his disappearance. His family describes him as an energetic youth who knew how to ride horses and rope cattle. Some agencies may classify William as a runaway.


    Investigating Agency
    If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
    Placer County Sheriff's Department


    Source Information
    The National Center For Missing and Exploited Children
    Child Protection Education Of America
    Placer County Sheriff's Department
    Child Protection Services Watch
    California Attorney General's Office
    The Mountain Democrat
    The Auburn Journal


    Updated 8 times since October 12, 2004.

    Last updated July 13, 2017; age-progression updated.

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