North American Missing Persons Network
Joseph Gerald Riley

1 2
Above Image: Riley

Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance

  • Missing Since: July 8, 1995 from Barstow, San Bernardino County, California
  • Classification: Endangered Missing
  • Date Of Birth: July 29, 1965
  • Age: 29
  • Height: 5'9"
  • Weight: 185 lbs.
  • Hair Color: Brown
  • Eye Color: Hazel
  • Race: White
  • Gender: Male
  • Distinguishing Characteristics: May have mustache. Prior fractured leg.
    Chip front tooth.
  • NCIC Number: M-858689247
  • Case Number: 95-4753

  • Details of Disappearance
    Riley was last seen at about 13:30 in Barstow, California on July 8, 1995. He was last seen getting into an American model maroon colored sedan in the Barstow Wal-Mart parking lot with Mark Wayne Adamson and possibly a third party.

    Adamson's roommate told police Adamson left town with Riley with a large sum of money to buy a vehicle. Both are presumed deceased.

    Barstow police said they believe the two had a large sum of cash to possibly use to make a drug deal at the time of their disappearance. Police believe the victims were attempting to purchase ephedrine, an ingredient used to manufacture methamphetamine, when they were robbed and killed. During the start of their investigation, police received tips that the two were killed and buried somewhere in the desert.

    James Linzy Franklin was found guilty of the murders of Joseph Riley and Mark Adamson. Franklin, who was arrested and charged with the murders in 2012, was serving a life sentence without parole at Centinela State Prison for an unrelated homicide in Big Bear. After two days of deliberations, a jury found Franklin, 44, guilty of two counts of murder and a conspiracy to commit a crime. Franklinís nephew and co-defendant Steven Dondero was sentenced to two years in county prison after accepting a plea deal. Dondero pleaded guilty to harboring or aiding a felony suspect/accessory in exchange for having two murder charges and a conspiracy to commit a crime charge dismissed. The other alleged suspect, Christian Bunty, had criminal charges against him dismissed without prejudice in April 2014.

    Joseph Riley was a carpenter at the time of his disappearance.

    Investigating Agency
    If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
    Barstow Police Department
    Detective Leo Griego
    (760) 256-3531, ext. 3242

    Source Information
    The Desert Dispatch
    The Desert Dispatch