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Search for teenager’s killer continues

A local family has increased the reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of their teenager’s murderer.

Thursday, November 18, 1999

A local family has increased the reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of their teenager’s murderer.

It has been eight months since the body of Nathanael Isaiah Hale, 17, was found in an isolated area on County Road 519 in Union Township March 16, and sheriff’s department investigators still do not have any leads, Detective Carol Kitts said.

"We haven’t heard anything new," Ms. Kitts said.

Hale’s family advertised a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the guilty party about three months ago, and have now increased that amount to $25,000, said Debbie Hale, Nathanael’s mother.

"If this doesn’t work, I don’t know what else to do," Mrs. Hale said. "It might just be taking awhile for people to respond."

Ms. Kitts said she was surprised the first offer of a reward netted no new information in the case.

"We didn’t receive any calls from the first set of awards," Ms. Kitts said.

But people with information might have been too scared to call and aid the investigation, she said.

"Or they might not know anything," Ms. Kitts said.

The investigation will remain open, and investigators will continue to search for someone who might have seen Hale the weekend before his body was discovered.

"There were four or five days where we couldn’t trace where he was," Ms. Kitts said.

Solving a homicide becomes increasingly difficult after the first 24 hours has passed, so any information would be helpful, Ms. Kitts added.

Anyone with related information should contact the sheriff’s department at 532-3525.

Hale had friends in the Huntington, W.Va., and Ohio area. He lived in Huntington.

"If anybody had seen him the weekend before his death, to tell us who he was with would be really useful," Ms. Kitts said.

Information also may be given directly to Hale’s family by calling 643-2304. All calls may remain anonymous, Mrs. Hale said.