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PA NICOLE LYNN BRYNER: Missing from Pittsburgh, PA - 11 March 1982 - Age 3

Discussion in 'Missing 1980 to 1989' started by Mysteries1974, Jul 11, 2019.

  1. Mysteries1974

    Mysteries1974 Well-Known Member

    The Doe Network:
    Case File 201DFPA

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    Left: Bryner, circa 1982; Right: Age-progressed to age 26 (circa 2005)

    Nicole Lynn Bryner
    Missing since March 11, 1982 from Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.
    Classification: Non-Family Abduction

    Vital Statistics

      • Date Of Birth: February 20, 1979
      • Age at Time of Disappearance: 3 years old
      • Height and Weight at Time of Disappearance: 2'6; 35 pounds
      • Distinguishing Characteristics: White female. Brown hair; brown eyes.

    Circumstances of Disappearance
    Nicole Bryner's mother told police her daughter was abducted March 9, 1982 at a Giant Eagle in the South Side.
    An extensive search provided few clues as to her whereabouts. Four years later, the mother's then-boyfriend allegedly confessed he had punched Bryner and accidentally killed her. Police never found the body he allegedly buried in a wooded area along Timberland Road in Brookline. Charges were never brought against the suspect, despite the alleged confession he made while serving time on burglary charges.
    Three years later the boyfriend was arraigned on a homicide charge, accused once again in Bryner's death. He said he placed Nicole's body in a plastic bag the next day and drove to a wooded section of Brookline, where they buried her body. No body was found in the supposed burial area and the charges were dropped.
    Nicole has never been found.

    If you have any information concerning Bryner's whereabouts, please contact:
    Pittsburgh Bureau of Police
    Email Form

    All information may be submitted on an anonymous basis.

    NCMEC #: NCMC600499

    NCIC Number:
    Please refer to this number when contacting any agency with information regarding this case.

    Source Information: The National Center For Missing and Exploited Children
    The Pittsburg
    Link: http://www.doenetwork.org/cases/201dfpa.html

    Return to the Unexplained Disappearances' Index


    edited by staff to add media link
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 12, 2019
  2. Mysteries1974

    Mysteries1974 Well-Known Member

    Nicole Lynn Bryner
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    Nicole, circa 1982; Age-progressions to age 26 (circa 2005); Melody Thomas Childs, circa 1982; Timothy Widman, circa 2006

    • Missing Since03/11/1982
    • Missing FromPittsburgh, Pennsylvania
    • ClassificationEndangered Missing
    • Date of Birth02/20/1979 (40)
    • Age3 years old
    • Height and Weight2'6, 35 pounds
    • Clothing/Jewelry DescriptionA blue jacket, a gray turtleneck sweater, a green velour t-shirt, blue jeans with a star on the right rear pocket, and brown suede shoes.
    • Distinguishing CharacteristicsCaucasian female. Brown hair, brown eyes. Some agencies may spell Nicole's middle name "Lynne."
    Details of Disappearance
    Nicole's mother, Melody Thomas Childs, told authorities that her daughter was abducted from a shopping cart on March 9, 1982. Childs claimed that Nicole was sitting inside the cart at a Giant Eagle supermarket store at 23rd Street and Jane Street on the south side of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She stated that when she turned around for a moment, Nicole disappeared. A photograph of Childs is posted with this case summary. She and Nicole lived in the 2000 block of Sarah Street.

    Authorities were skeptical of Childs's account from the beginning; no one else remembered seeing Nicole in the grocery store at all that day. Several days after Nicole disappeared, a letter was found in her mother's home which was purportedly from Nicole's abductor. The letter stated "Nikky" was dead and buried. Handwriting analysis determined it was probable that Childs herself had written the letter. An extensive search yielded little evidence at the time and Nicole's case became cold.

    Timothy Wayne Widman confessed to Nicole's murder four years later in May 1986. A photograph of Widman is posted with this case summary. He was imprisoned on burglary charges at the time of his claims. He had been Childs's boyfriend and lived with her and Nicole in the 2000 block of Sarah Street in 1982, but by the time of his confession he had ended his relationship with Childs.

    Widman said that he slapped the child in March 1982 after she bit his toe, and she fell and hit her head. Afterwards, he was unaware she was seriously injured and Childs put her to bed. She was found deceased the following day. Widman claimed that he and Childs put Nicole's naked body in a green plastic garbage bag and buried it in shallow grave in a wooded area along Timberland Road in Brookline, Pennsylvania. They then reported the abduction to cover up Nicole's death.

    People who knew the couple reported that Widman regularly abused both Nicole and her mother, and that Childs was fearful of him. She was still married to her first husband, Nicole's father, at the time she was involved with Widman. Nicole's father lived in Texas in 1982 and was quickly ruled out as a suspect in his daughter's case.

    A search was conducted in the region for Nicole's remains, but nothing was located. Widman was nevertheless charged with involuntary manslaughter in her case shortly after his confession, but the charges were dropped in 1987. Prosecutors stated that there was not enough evidence against Widman to support any charges; the law at the time dictated that a body had to be found to prove homicide.

    Childs, who moved to Garland, Texas and married after Nicole's disappearance, was arrested in June 1986 and charged with felony counts of hindering prosecution and providing false reports to the authorities in connection with her daughter's case. The charges were dropped after Widman refused to testify against her. Childs died in Texas in 2001.

    In September 2006, Widman was charged again with criminal homicide in Nicole's presumed death. Investigators did not have any fresh evidence against him, but it is no longer unheard of for homicide cases to be prosecuted without the victim's body being found, so authorities decided to go forward with the case against Widman. He cooperated with the investigation and, in May 2007, admitted to Nicole's murder and pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter.

    Widman was sentenced to two to four years in prison, with credit for time served. Authorities stated they did not have any evidence to prove intentional murder, as Nicole's body was never located. Widman has apologized to Nicole's surviving relatives. He died in 2011, at the age of 56.

    The missing child's report date is listed as March 11, 1982, although Childs claimed Nicole was abducted on March 9.
    Investigating Agency
    Source Information
    Updated 7 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated August 6, 2012; clothing/jewelry description added, details of disappearance updated.

    Charley Project Link: http://charleyproject.org/case/nicole-lynn-bryner
  3. Mel70

    Mel70 Bronze Member

    I don't understand why they didn't charge the scumbag mother for at least lying to the Police based on the fact the Boyfriend was sentenced for her death. Meaning she wasn't abducted shopping as she stated.
    Mysteries1974 likes this.
  4. Mysteries1974

    Mysteries1974 Well-Known Member

    Yep, they both should’ve been charged. Her case is classified as a non family abduction with NCMEC and other agencies but it’s believed that Widman murdered her. If her mother had just left him, little Nikki would still be alive:(
    Mel70 likes this.
  5. Mel70

    Mel70 Bronze Member

    Yes he confessed to it. Making the Mother's story a lie.
  6. Mysteries1974

    Mysteries1974 Well-Known Member

    I just wish they found her. Nicole was one of the first children added to the milk cartons. Her mother stated the girl was abducted two days before the day she reported her missing so that basically gave it away.
    Mel70 likes this.
  7. Mel70

    Mel70 Bronze Member

    Nice to see you "Mysteries":waving:
  8. Mel70

    Mel70 Bronze Member

    She was such a cute little girl.
  9. Mysteries1974

    Mysteries1974 Well-Known Member

    Nice to see you too Mel:loveshower::rockon:
    Mel70 likes this.
  10. Mysteries1974

    Mysteries1974 Well-Known Member

    She was and she didn’t deserve her fate. She could’ve lived a beautiful life but was lost to ignorance
    Mel70 likes this.
  11. Mel70

    Mel70 Bronze Member

  12. Mysteries1974

    Mysteries1974 Well-Known Member

    5-PAF – Nicole Lynn Bryner

    Left: Nicole circa 1982 Right: Age Progressed to age 26


    Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance

    Missing Since: March 11, 1982 from Pittsburgh, Alleghany County, Pennsylvania

    Classification: Non-Family Abduction

    Date Of Birth: February 20, 1979

    Age: 3 years old

    Height and Weight: 2’6″; 35 pounds

    Distinguishing Characteristics: White Female, Brown hair, Brown eyes, Nicole May use the name “Nikki”

    Clothing/Jewelry Description: A blue jacket, a gray turtleneck sweater, a green velour t-shirt, blue jeans with a star on the right rear pocket, and brown suede shoes


    Circumstances of Disappearance

    Nicole Lynn Bryner was last seen on March 11th 1982. Her mother reported that Nicole was abducted from a supermarket known as the Giant Eagle Supermarket in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The supermarket was located at 23rd Street and Jane Street. Her mother claimed that she left Nicole in a shopping cart as she was at the meat counter. She said she turned around for a moment and when she looked back, Nicole was gone.

    Authorities immediately started to search for the young toddler but they found no trace of Nicole or her supposed abductors. Authorities were skeptical of the story from the beginning. No one reported seeing Nicole at the grocery store, however according a news article, a man at a pretzel stand reported that he saw a child matching the girls description staring at him while he made and sold pretzels. He stated the child vanished soon after.

    Several days after Nicole vanished, her mother received a letter purportedly from Nicole’s abductors. The letter said that “Nikki was dead and buried”. Handwriting analysis suggested that Nicole’s mother, Melody Childs, wrote the letter herself. Extensive searching uncovered no signs of Nicole.

    Four years later, Timothy Wayne Widman, Melody’s live in boyfriend at the time, confessed to killing Nicole in March of 1982. According to him, he was on a drug binge at the time and was sleeping when Nicole awoke him by biting his toe. He stated that he punched Nicole and then she hit her head on a radiator. He didn’t realize she was badly injured. Melody took Nicole to bed with her.

    The next morning they found that Nicole had died. They wrapped Nicole’s body in a plastic bag and buried in a wooded area along Brookline, Pennsylvania. Investigators searched the area they indicated but Nicole’s body was not found. He stated that it was Melody’s idea to report the abduction to cover up her death.

    Widman was originally charged with Involuntary manslaughter and was due for trial. Melody was arrested in June of 1986 for federal charges of lying to authorities about Nicole’s disappearance. They had to bury the case because they could not find Nicole’s body and it was a law back then that a body must be found in order to prove murder or manslaughter. The law changed in 1988.

    In September of 2006, Widman was charged with criminal homicide in Nicole’s case. Since the law changed, they can charge him with Nicoles presumed death. He cooperated with authorities and in May of 2007, he admitted to Nicole’s murder again. He plead guilty to involuntary manslaughter and was sentenced to two to four years in prison. He died at age 56 in 2011. He apologized to Nicole’s living relatives.

    Nicole’s mother died in 2001 at a Texas hospital after back surgery. Nicole’s case remains unsolved and authorities believe she was the victim of foul play. Her case remains classified as a non family abduction.

    Suspect Images:

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Melody Childs on 03/11/1982, Timothy Widman In 2006


    Investigating Agency

    If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:

    Pittsburgh Bureau of Police 412-255-2888

    NCMEC Number: 600499


    Source Information:

    The Charley Project

    The Doe Network

    For The Lost (Jahi)
    Mel70 likes this.
  13. Mel70

    Mel70 Bronze Member

    Thank You "Mysteries". Apologized. Psh. Empty words. She most likely would be a Mother herself now. Even a young Grandmother.
    Mysteries1974 likes this.
  14. Mel70

    Mel70 Bronze Member

    Ahhhh....She did get in trouble for lying.
  15. Mysteries1974

    Mysteries1974 Well-Known Member

    Yep, in June of 1986, Melody was arrested on federal charges of lying to the authorities investigating Nicole’s case. They had to bury the vase because they had no proof
    Mel70 likes this.
  16. Mel70

    Mel70 Bronze Member

    Yeah. And being Federal charges too. This little girl didn't get the justice she deserved.
  17. Mysteries1974

    Mysteries1974 Well-Known Member

    Yeah, at first glance of the case, I would’ve hoped that if someone had in fact taken the girl, that they wouldn’t kill her. It’s clear that something viral and evil happened to Nicole

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