Left and Center: Kevin circa, 1984
Right: Age Progressed to age 39
Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance
Missing Since: February 10, 1984
Missing From: San Francisco, San Francisco County, California
Classification: Non-Family Abduction
Date Of Birth: January 24, 1974
Age: 10 years old
Height and Weight: 4’6″ and 72 pounds
Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian Male, Brown hair, Gray/Green eyes, Kevin has freckles on his face, he has a small horizontal scar on his tongue, Kevin has dyslexia which is a learning disability that makes it difficult for him to read
Clothing/Jewelry Description: A San Francisco Giants Jacket, his school uniform; a white shirt sleeved dress shirt, a dark green sweater, brown corduroy pants, and beige Nike sneakers
NCMEC Number: 600782
Details of Disappearance
Kevin was last seen in San Francisco, California on February 10th 1984. He was last seen at approximately 6:35 pm as he waited for a city bus at the bus stop on the corner of Oak Street and Masonic Avenue. He had gone to basketball practice earlier that evening and left the school building early and decided to take the bus instead of catching a ride home with the other kids and coach. Kevin was usually accompanied by his 11 year old brother, Gary, but he was home sick.
A witness told police they saw Kevin sitting on bench and he appeared to be talking to an unidentified man at the time. The man was described as being Caucasian with blonde hair. He stood at 6 feet tall and was in his 20s or 30s in 1984. The man had a large black dog with him at the time he was seen with Kevin. The dog is described as possibly being a Great Dane of similar breed.
Kevin never returned home and was never heard from again. Kevin’s mother, Ann Deasy Collins, knew something was wrong right when Kevin didn’t return home. She called everyone she could think of but no one saw Kevin or knew where he was. She began scouring the neighborhood in search of her son. She contacted police to report him missing, they simply said he is likely at a friends residence.
Authorities offered very little help during the initial investigation but Kevin’s family and friends sprung to action. They printed out posters with Kevin’s picture and information on them and plastered them all over the city in hopes of someone seeing him. They also created a hotline in case someone called with information about his whereabouts.
Authorities couldn’t locate any witnesses who saw Kevin walking on Masonic, they have concluded that Kevin was abducted by a stranger. Extensive searches of various places in the San Francisco area turned up no signs of Kevin. They searched areas such as wooded areas and parks as well. There were various possible sightings of Kevin after his disappearance.
In late February of 1984, a woman in Sacramento recalled seeing a boy who matched Kevin’s description in a frozen yogurt shop. She said he was about 10 years old and was sitting between two older men. The woman said she felt something wasn’t right about the boy. When she returned home, she told her husband about what she saw and he suggested it could be Kevin.
An employee at the shop was shown a photograph of Kevin and he said the boy in the shop could’ve been Kevin. The lead, however, was deemed inconclusive due to the little information available about the lead. There was another reported sighting of Kevin in Sacramento and after this police issued an 11 state bulletin for two men and a boy in a vehicle.
The vehicle was described as being a 1956-1959 model Chevrolet sedan. Investigators stated they had no knowledge that the vehicle in question contained Kevin or his supposed abductor(s) but they had to check out the lead to prove if Kevin was in the vehicle or not. The car was filled with camping gear and appeared to be heading for the Mother Load or the High Sierra. Police in the Mother Load didn’t see the vehicle despite being on watch for it.
Investigators also received a tip which placed Kevin in a white Ford panel truck with a young man who was in his mid 20s at the time of the report. It’s possible Kevin was abducted by two men who were driving a four door royal blue Ford Galaxy. That report has never been confirmed. It’s unknown who abducted Kevin and for what reason.
Investigators have considered the possibility that serial killer Jon Scott Dunkle might’ve been involved in Kevin’s abduction and possible murder. He was responsible for the murders of three boys in the Northern area of California; specifically the town of Belmont. On November 8th 1981, John Davies was 15 years old when he was reported missing from his residence. He was close friends with Jon at the time.
In 1986, Dunkle confessed to kidnapping and killing Davies in 1981 and led authorities to his remains which were identified through dental records. He also confessed to killing Lance Turner on October 2nd 1984. He was reported as missing that day by his mother at 7:00 pm. He was brutally stabbed to death and his body was later found.
Dunkle made an additional confession to his cellmate and another inmate about killing another victim. He said the victim died around the time that Kevin was abducted. He claimed he killed the victim by throwing them off the Golden Gate Bridge but made it look like a suicide attempt. Dunkle got a manual labor job with the IRS in San Francisco which is just two miles from where Kevin was abducted.
It’s unknown if there was even a fourth victim of Dunkle and whether it was Kevin or not is also unknown. Dunkle has not been criminally charged with any wrongdoing in Kevin’s case. He’s been on death row since 1990 for the Davies and Turner murders. In 2013, investigators named Dan Leonard Therrien as a person of interest in Kevin’s disappearance.
Therrien lived in a home that was just a couple of blocks away from where Kevin was last seen in 1984. Dans residence was specifically located near the corner of Masonic Avenue and Page Street. He was known to use at least five different aliases in the 1980s. He was known to use the name Wayne Jackson at the time of Kevin’s disappearance.
Therrien has a lengthy criminal record in both California and Canada. Therrien had a felony for a lewd act on a child but police didn’t know this at the time since he used different names. In 1981, he served six months in prison after he plead guilty to a felony charge of lewd act on a child. The victim in that case was just Steven years old.
In 1973, Therrien abducted and sexually assaulted two 13 year old boys in Canada. He skipped bail and fled the region before any criminal charges could be filed against him. He has been eyed in Kevin’s abduction as well and he even consented to a search of his home for the boy. He matched the general description of the man seen speaking to Kevin at the bus stop with the big black dog. Therrien owned a dog like that in 1984.
In 2013, Therrien’s home was searched again and investigators located several bones under the concrete in the garage. They later turned out to be animal bones. Investigators also utilized cadaver dogs which led to nothing. Therrien was also known to use the following aliases; Raymond William Stewart, Kelley Lee Dawson, and Kelley Sean Stewart.
Investigators aren’t sure if Therrien was involved but he’s concerned a strong person of interest in the case. Investigators hope someone will come forward with information regarding Therrien and Kevin. Kevin’s case has been profiled by numerous television shows and his face appeared on the sides of milk cartons in the 1980s.
At the time of his disappearance, Kevin was a fourth grade student at St. Agnes School and was the sixth child out of his ten siblings in his family. His siblings range in age from seven to nineteen. He lived in an Irish Catholic family and resided in the 2500 block of Sutter Street. One cousin and a foster child were living with Kevin at the time he went missing.
Authorities do not believe Kevin ran away from home. He did have some issues at school since he was bullied but he got along nicely with his family. Both of Kevin’s parents divorced about five years after Kevin’s abduction. They held a memorial service for him in 1994. Kevin’s father believes he is deceased.
Kevin’s father did find the Kevin Collins Foundation. It was a missing children’s organization that operated from about a few months after Kevin went missing up until 1996 due to financial constraints. His mother still lives in the area. Kevin’s abduction remains unsolved.
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
San Francisco Police Department 415-558-5500