Randolph Dial

Cobra Kai Season 4 - The Loop

Randolph dial.jpg
Randolph Dial

Real Name: Randolph Franklin Dial
Aliases: Randolph Franklin
Wanted For: Escape
Missing Since: August 30, 1994


Details: In 1986, artist Randolph Dial confessed to committing the September 16, 1981 contract murder of karate instructor Kelly Dean Hogan. After serving several years in prison, he was transferred to a minimum security unit at Oklahoma State Reformatory. While there, he became a model prisoner. He was even given access to property outside of prison. He was assigned to be the caretaker for the home of deputy warden Randy Parker, which was right next to the prison. Randy lived there with his wife, Bobbi, and their two daughters. Over the years, Bobbi had worked with several inmates in rehabilitation programs.
Bobbi and Dial began working together when money was donated to the prison to start an art program. The two often spent time alone together in the Parker's garage, which had been converted into a ceramics studio. During this time, Dial apparently developed feelings for Bobbi. After a few weeks, Randy felt that Dial was spending too much time at the Parker home. He also believed that Dial was trying to control the arts program. He told Dial to back off of Bobbi and the arts program.
On August 30, 1994, the couple had breakfast with their daughters. Later, Randy left to go to work next door and the children left to go to school. When Randy left, Dial was already there, working in the front yard. At noon, Randy came home for lunch and found the house empty. There was note from Bobbi, saying that she had gone shopping and left him a sandwich in the refrigerator. He did not believe that anything was wrong.
Randy later returned to the prison; at 4:45PM, his older daughter called him, saying that Bobbi had not returned home. However, Randy said that she had gone shopping and told his daughter not to worry. Thirty minutes later, Randy returned home to find that Bobbi was still not back. Soon, he began to fear that something had happened to her. He contacted the area hospitals, but found no trace of her.
Randy remembered that he had not seen Dial that afternoon. He asked an officer to check Dial's cell. The officer discovered that Dial was not there. Randy feared that Dial had escaped and abducted his wife in the process. Later that evening, Bobbi's mother Clara received a call from her. She told her mother to call Randy and the children and tell them that she loved them. She hung up before she could say anything else. Clara knew that something bad had happened to her.
The next day, Bobbi called her best friend and gave her the same message. The friend felt that she was being held against her will. Twenty-four hours later, her van was found abandoned just across the Texas border. Investigators found that the van had been cleaned and there was no evidence of a struggle. Basic cigarettes were found at the scene; this was the brand that Dial smoked.
Randy learned from an inmate that for several months, Dial had been actively trying to barter for Valium on the prison black market. This led Randy to believe that Dial had drugged Bobbi when he kidnapped her. However, there was no concrete evidence of a kidnapping. Investigators considered the possibility that Bobbi had left willingly with Dial. He had made several comments to inmates that he was infatuated with her. However, investigators have noted that they found no evidence that suggests that Bobbi left willingly with him. Randy is certain that she would never leave voluntarily with Dial.
Ten days after the disappearances, Bobbi made one final phone call, this one to her brother's wife. Once again, she sounded upset. She asked her sister-in-law to tell the girls that she loved them and that everything would be alright. This was last time anyone heard from her. There have been several sightings of Dial and a woman who may be Bobbi. One of the most credible sightings occurred in September of 1994 at an art sale in Galveston, Texas. The woman had blond hair, so investigators believe that Bobbi either dyed her hair or was wearing a wig. Witnesses said that she seemed nervous and scared.
Investigators and Bobbi's family are still searching for her and Dial.
Extra Notes: The case was featured as a part of the March 17, 1995 episode. The case was profiled on America's Most Wanted during the investigation and documented on Dateline after it was resolved.

Dial after his capture
Results: Captured. In April 2005, a tip from an America's Most Wanted viewer led to Randolph Dial's arrest in East Texas on a chicken ranch. Soon after, Bobbi Parker was found alive, working on a farm. Dial was returned to prison and Parker was reunited with her family, but also arraigned. The charges indicate that they were romantically involved and she helped Dial escape even though Dial claimed to have kidnapped her, meaning that Parker developed Stockholm Syndrome. Dial also claimed that their relationship was never romantic. He told her that he would harm her or her family if she tried to leave.
Dial received an extra seven years in prison for the escape. He died in 2007 after a lengthy illness in Oklahoma at the age of 62. Parker's trial began July 5, 2011, and she was convicted of helping Dial escape. After serving six months of a one year sentence, she was released and has since moved back in with her husband Randy Parker.

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