The Victims The Place Time It Was The Crime The Investigation The Convicted

The Victims

 Left to right:  Chris Byers, Michael Moore an Steve Branch.

They were in the second grade at Weaver Elementary School, the school located just a couple of doors down from the homes of Byers and Moore. Each household had two children and the loss was particularly harsh on the sibling. Each had achieved the rank of "Wolf" in the local Cub Scout pack.

Michael Moore enjoyed wearing his scout uniform even when he was not at meetings. He was considered the leader of the three. He lived with his parents, Roy Todd and Diana Moore and his nine-year-old sister, Dawn.

Steve "Stevie" Branch taught himself to flip and make karate moves like the Ninja Turtles. He bought a birthstone ring for Michael Moore's sister, Dawn. He had a pet dog named King and a pet turtle. He was an honor student. He lived with his mother, Pamela Hobbs, his stepfather, Terry Hobbs, and a four-year-old stepsister, Amanda.

Christopher Byers was hyperactive and naturally curious. He enjoyed swimming. He was nicknamed "Worm" because he squirmed so much. He lived with his mother, Sharon Melissa Byers, his stepfather, John Mark Byers, and his stepbrother, Shawn Ryan Clark, aged 13. According to his mother, he was a typical eight-year-old. "He still believed in the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus. He liked to play in the dirt with trucks. He liked to color." [Melissa Byers, West Memphis Evening Times, May 7, 1993]

[sources: Memphis Commercial Appeal and West Memphis Evening Times]


Michael Moore. b. July 27, 1984 in Key West, FL. 
Sister: Dawn Moore of West Memphis, AR.
Parents: Roy Todd and Diane "Dana" Moore of West Memphis, AR.
Uncle and aunt: James F. Moore and Linda Carson Moore of Marion, AR.
Maternal grandmother: Carolyn Howard, OK.
Maternal great grandmother: Louise Smith, OK.
Paternal grandparents: James and Georgia Landrum of Memphis, TN.
Great grandmother: Mae Pugh, West Memphis, AR.

Christopher Byers. b. June 23, 1984, Memphis, TN. 
Mother: Sharon Melissa Byers. b. Jan. 16, 1956. d. Mar 29, 1996.
Half-brother: Shawn Ryan Clark of West Memphis, AR
Her parents: Kilbourn A Defir (1924-2004) and Doris C Defir, Memphis, TN.
Maternal uncle: Dennis Defir, Horn Lake, MS (residence 2004)
Father: Ricky Lee Murray, b. July 1961
Stepfather: John Mark Byers.
(Family below are through stepfather)
Step-uncle and aunt: Sonny and Marilee Simpson of Little Rock, AR
Step-aunt: Beth Cossey of Jonesboro, AR.
Step-uncle: George W. Byers of Memphis, TN.

Stevie Branch. b. November 26, 1984 in Blytheville, AR. 
Mother: Pamela Hobbs of West Memphis, AR.
Brother: Dillan Gordon Branch of Osceola, AR.
Maternal grandparents: Jack and Marie Hicks of Blythesville, AR
Father: Steve Branch of Osceola, AR.
Stepmother: Sherri Branch of Osceola, AR.
Paternal grandparents: Billy and Geneva Branch of Earle, AR.
Step-father: Terry Hobbs of West Memphis, AR.
Step-brother: Bryan Hobbs of Malvern, AR.
Step-sister: Amanda Hobbs of West Memphis, AR.
Greatgrandparents: Stacey Hicks of Gobler MO, Bonnie Hale of Cooter, MO.
Willie and Lola Fitzhugh and Almeda Branch, all of Earle, AR.

[source: obituaries. Unless noted, residences were for 1993]


Pamela and Terry Hobbs; Todd and Diana Moore

Left to right: Pamela and Terry Hobbs; Todd and Diana Moore

Melissa and Mark ByersRicky Lee Murray

Melissa and Mark Byers                                                       Ricky Lee Murray, 1989

Copyright © 2008 Martin David Hill