DiscoverCrime Stories with Nancy GraceHEARTBREAK: BOY, 13, DEAD IN YARD AFTER "SEXTORTION" SCHEME
HEARTBREAK: BOY, 13, DEAD IN YARD AFTER "SEXTORTION" SCHEME

HEARTBREAK: BOY, 13, DEAD IN YARD AFTER "SEXTORTION" SCHEME

Update: 2024-06-112
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Geoffrey Hauptman kisses his wife goodbye as he leaves for work.


Moments later, he calls Betsy Hauptman telling her to lock the doors and check on the children because someone’s passed out in the front yard. As he calls 911, Betsy Hauptman goes from room to room, locating 5 of 6 children. Timothy is missing.


Betsy Hauptman meets her husband at the front door, hysterically explaining she can’t find Timothy. With tears in his eyes, Geoffrey Hauptman shakes his head at his wife, and she screams. The body in the front yard is Timothy, dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. Security cameras show Timothy sitting in the family car in the driveway for two hours the night before, frantically scrolling on his cellphone. Sumter, South Carolina PD, collected Timothy’s phone and his school Chromebook.


Just before his death, Timothy changed the passcode on his phone, so detectives focused on the task of unlocking it. Betsy Hauptman tells Detective Kelsey Wade that Timothy mainly communicated over Snapchat, and Wade issues a subpoena for the teen’s account. Eleven weeks go by with no answers, despite Hauptman calling twice a week. Wade finally informs Hauptman investigators that they are submitting a second Snapchat subpoena, along with a subpoena for Timothy’s Cash App activity.


A month later, Sumter PD unearthed dozens of suicide notes addressed to family and friends. They also find an extensive call and text record with an unsaved phone number with a New York area code. The texts included links to a second Snapchat account Timothy used.


Messages on that account reveal Timothy sent a stranger $35 a day to prevent them from posting an explicit photo of him online. One of Timothy’s last messages begged the stranger to stop, reading, “Please, I’m just a child.”


Joining Nancy Grace Today: 



  • Betsy Hauptman  - Timothy Barnett's Mother

  • Joe Cunningham - Victim's Family Lawyer 

  • Titania Jordan – BARK CMO Chief Marketing Officer/Chief Parenting Office

  • Detective Rich Wistocki: Child Crime Expert, President of BeSure Consulting (30 years), 23-year SWAT team member; Formed the Will County Illinois States Attorney’s High Technology Crimes Unit that made over 90 sexual predator arrests in its first 3 ½ years.

  •  Ashley Jones - Reporter and Anchor WIS News 10 in South Carolina

See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

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HEARTBREAK: BOY, 13, DEAD IN YARD AFTER "SEXTORTION" SCHEME

HEARTBREAK: BOY, 13, DEAD IN YARD AFTER "SEXTORTION" SCHEME

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