Texas mom’s killer is captured after years on the run. Where did he bury her body?

Nicki Myers-Bates lost her mother nearly two decades ago, when she was just 7 years old, but she says no amount of time will heal this wound.

Nicki Bates: You always hear that time heals. It’ll get better. It’ll get easier. That is not true. … I think it’s harder as an adult without a mom than it was … as a kid. … You have graduations that she misses. … She missed my wedding. She has eight grandchildren that she will never meet.

Now a mother of three herself, Bates is still searching for her mother and fighting to bring the man who killed her to justice.

Nicki Bates: Pretty much when I became a teenager and got my cellphone, you know, I read every article … every news … video. … I seen it, I read it.

Peter Van Sant: Ryan, even when you talk about her today, you get emotional about it. Why is that?

Ryan Myers: I still love h —  (cries).

Peter Van Sant: You still love her.

Ryan Myers: (shakes his head yes)

Ryan Myers says he and Tammy were just teenagers when they first fell in love; he was 20 when he asked her to marry him.

Ryan Myers: The first year we were together, we had a kid … and then … following year had another kid. … A few later years later we had Nicki.

Bates says there wasn’t much money to go around, but there was always more than enough love. Especially between mother and daughter.

Tammy Myers and Nicki Bates
Tammy Myers with her daughter Nicki.

Nicki Bates


Nicki Bates: She was very loving … she was made to be a girl mom, even though she had two — two boys … she was very girly, full of life, fun, energetic.

Ryan Myers worked long hours as a window installer so Tammy Myers could be a fulltime mom. Then, fate dealt the family a devastating blow.

Nicki Bates: My dad was working … on top of a three-story building. He got electrocuted and fell off and hit the concrete.

Ryan Myers: I fell three floors, broke my back and legs. And, uh, unfortunately, the company I worked for didn’t have insurance.

Peter Van Sant: How did you pay for all this?

Ryan Myers: Well, I mean, essentially, Tammy had to work and — and try to pay some of the bills while I was down.

Nicki Bates: And she had no experience. So, she did what she thought was easiest and became a — stripper? Am I allowed to say that?

Peter Van Sant: Sure you can say that.

Nicki Bates: She became … a female dancer.

Peter Van Sant: How did your dad take all of this?

Nicki Bates: Um, I don’t think he loved it. I think he wanted her to find another job, but … she was like, it’s fine, nothing’s happening here. I’m just getting the money.

And so it was, until Tammy Myers met a big spender named William Greer.

Nicki Bates: He was — as far as I know, a regular at the club. … he … threw a lot of money around …

Peter Van Sant: Where’d he get his money?

Nicki Bates: He owned a vending machine company. … So, her and my dad split up and she gets with him.

Sometime in 2006, Tammy Myers moved about an hour away, to a house in Spring, Texas, with Greer and two sons from his first marriage. Bates and her brothers would spend the weekends there.

Peter Van Sant: Was he kind to you?

Nicki Bates: As far as I remember, yes. Uh, always giving us money, trying to take us on trips.

Peter Van Sant: Did your mom stop working as a stripper?

Nicki Bates: Yes.

Peter Van Sant: Did you sense … that William Greer was good for your mother?

Nicki Bates: When I first met him, yes.

Tammy Myers
Tammy Myers

Nicki Bates


But things would turn ugly over time, says Bates. Not long before her mother went missing, Bates says there were clear signs of physical abuse, which Tammy Myers documented in photos.

Nicki Bates: She stole his truck and came all the way to Cleveland (Texas) from Spring, and she could barely get out of the car, and she was bleeding, she was bruised.

Bates says her mom tried to cover it up.

Nicki Bates: She told us that it was a dirt bike accident, but she had told my stepmother that he had hit her with numchucks (sic).

Peter Van Sant: What’s numchuck?

Nicki Bates: You see karate, the um, the wooden things you swing around.

Peter Van Sant: He hit her with that?

Nicki Bates: Yes.

Bates says Greer came looking for his truck — and her mother.

Nicki Bates: My dad was like you need to get off my property. And he was arguing, saying, well, she stole my truck and my dad’s like, I don’t care. You need to get off my property.

Nicki Bates: You know, my dad always says … I wish I would’ve just shot him because your mom would still be here.

Bates says she has since learned that her mother had been warned about Greer’s propensity for violence by someone who knew him well: his ex-wife.

Nicki Bates: She would tell my mom that, you know, you need to leave him, he’s dangerous.

Sadly, it seems like Tammy Myers may have been thinking about doing just that but ran out of time.

Peter Van Sant: And is it true that the two of you were … talking about getting back together before she disappeared?

Ryan Myers: Yes, sir.

Then, as Christmas 2006 approached, Tammy Myers mysteriously vanished.

Ryan Myers: I had a missed call from her. And I tried to call her back and I didn’t get a response.

Nicki Bates: I remember crying a lot. Um, just being devastated, not only for me, but seeing my dad the way — that way was just devastating.

And that’s when this case took the first of many bizarre turns. Just eight days before Tammy Myers was reported missing, Greer was arrested for public intoxication.

Greer was recorded on dashcam video confessing to two sheriff’s deputies that he had shot Tammy Myers.

WILLIAM GREER (dashcam video): The gun just went off… Oh my God, it’s the worst thing I ever did was look in her eyes and watch her die.

Peter Van Sant: Were you aware that William Greer had been arrested by sheriff’s deputies at that time?

Ryan Myers: No, sir.

And in the next strange twist, Greer was released.

Ryan Myers: I’m still … lost to why when somebody sits there and admitted to something, why you would just turn them loose so easily?

WILLIAM GREER’S DASHCAM CONFESSION

Back in 2006, Paul Lasco was a deputy for the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office. In the early morning hours of December 22, Lasco and his partner got a call about suspicious activity, on a  road in Cleveland, Texas.

Sheriff’s Deputy Paul Lasco: There was a vehicle, a truck in the ditch here. And there was nobody around it. The truck was running. The lights were on. Door was open.

The whole thing was captured on dashcam video. Lasco says that at the time, there was a fenced-in field bordered by a large, wooded area.  

Sheriff’s Deputy Paul Lasco: My partner went down … the driveway here … next to the driveway was like a brush pile that was pulled up.

That’s where Lasco’s partner found the missing driver — a highly intoxicated, William Greer.

Sheriff’s Deputy Paul Lasco: It appeared that he had been using some sort of … drugs.

DET. KLOPTON (dashcam video): That’s what he acts like, he acts like he’s on meth.

He was also half naked.

Sheriff’s Deputy Paul Lasco: He had a — a button-up shirt on and no pants. … No underwear. He was naked from the waist down.

Peter Van Sant: Now you’ve seen a lot of things, how strange was this?

Sheriff’s Deputy Paul Lasco: This was pretty strange.

DET. CLOPTON (dashcam video): Where do you think your shoes, or your boots are at?

WILLIAM GREER: All them things … Got too muddy and bogged down. Cause it’s a swamp out there.

Greer’s clothing was never recovered, but much more alarming than his physical state was what Greer freely said to two detectives.

WILLIAM GREER (dashcam video): It was an accident and I love her with all my heart …

Sheriff’s Deputy Paul Lasco: He said that he accidentally shot … Tammy … uh in the chest. And that he, he watched her die.

William Greer dashcam confession
William Greer during his dashcam confession. “The gun just went off … I couldn’t believe what happened … Oh, my God, it’s the worst thing I ever did was look in her eyes and watch her die,” he told investigators.

Liberty County Sheriff’s Office


WILLIAM GREER (dashcam video): The gun just went off … I couldn’t believe what happened … Oh, my God, it’s the worst thing I ever did was look in her eyes and watch her die.

Greer told them the shooting had taken place at his home in Spring, about 40 miles southwest of Cleveland — a different county with a different sheriff. Back then, Sid Miller was a homicide detective in the Harris County Sheriff’s Office. He would later learn that Harris County had been contacted by a Liberty County dispatcher— and asked to send two deputies to Greer’s home for a welfare check.

Det. Sid Miller: They peered through the windows, looked inside the house. … and they didn’t see anything that was out of the ordinary, in their opinion.

Sheriff’s Deputy Paul Lasco: Our dispatch notified us that Harris County went out there and everything looked fine.

Lasco says they attempted to question Greer some more, but by then he had sobered up, and stopped talking.

SHERIFF’S DEPUTY (dashcam video): You confessed to killing her.

WILLIAM GREER: Oh no … I don’t remember that partner …

Without probable cause to believe that a murder had occurred, all Greer could be charged with was public intoxication. So, Lasco and his partner took him to the Liberty County Jail, where he was booked, released on bond the next day — and disappeared

Sheriff’s Deputy Paul Lasco: It’s frustrating because we had him. … And … now he’s — he’s gone.

Bates says no one realized just how “gone” Greer was, until days later when Greer’s sons from his first marriage returned from Christmas vacation with their mother.

Nicki Bates: And when their mom goes to drop them off, they start freaking out. We don’t want to go home.

The boys had been with their mother since the day Tammy Myers disappeared. Now, 11 days later, they were telling their mother that the morning she picked them up, they heard their father shoot Tammy Myers. Their mother took the boys straight down to the sheriff’s office, for an interview. That’s when Detective Miller got involved.

Det. Sid Miller: They indicated that sometime the morning of December the 19th, between 2 a.m. and 5 a.m., they heard Greer and Tammy arguing … one of them described, uh, hearing what sounded like Tammy running down the hallway and being thrown against the wall. He also described hearing a gunshot and he heard William Greer make the comment about, “Are you dead? Are you still alive?”

Nicki Bates: At this point, they obtain a search warrant, and they go into his house.

When Miller arrived at the house, he discovered Greer’s brother-in-law.

Det. Sid Miller: He was actually there cleaning out the house.

He told the detectives he didn’t know the house was a crime scene.

Peter Van Sant: And what was he cleaning up?

Det. Sid Miller: He was taking, uh, property out of the house. Uh, we learned that he had taken some guns out of there, at the direction of Mister Greer.

Still, says Miller, the house was clearly a crime scene.

Det. Sid Miller: I noticed that there was like blood smear, uh, on some of the walls. … I walked into the bedroom, you know, you had a mattress … soaked blood on the side of the mattress. There were bullet holes … in the bedroom.

Peter Van Sant: And so what William Greer had actually told those Liberty County deputies turned out to be true?

Det. Sid Miller: It turned — yes.

One more thing you should know about that night. Deputies found Tammy Myers’ cellphone on the front seat of Greer’s truck. They used it to call Tammy’s mother, who Bates says told deputies that Greer had been physically abusing her daughter.

Nicki Bates: The … older I get … the more angry I get. They — they really failed, not only her, but just everyone in this situation.

Bates says it still infuriates her that on the night Greer confessed, a search warrant would have made all the difference.

Peter Van Sant: Why didn’t they seek a search warrant to get into the house that evening?

Det. Sid Miller: I think at that particular time, based on what Greer had told Liberty County, um, because of his intoxicated state, they — they couldn’t verify, substantiate whether that was credible information.

Miller says that night there just wasn’t enough probable cause for a search warrant. And even after searching Greer’s home, they still couldn’t find Tammy Myers. 

Det. Sid Miller: We actually did a, uh, search of the house … and we had the cadaver dogs … do a search of the property, and we didn’t find anything.

Miller says they also searched the woods where Greer had been arrested. Still, even without Tammy Myers’ body, the Harris County District Attorney’s Office felt they had enough to charge Greer with first-degree murder. On March 16, 2007, nearly three months after Greer’s drunken confession, a grand jury voted to indict him. There was just one problem, says former Deputy US Marshal Leslie Ramin.

Deputy Marshal Leslie Ramin: He was in the wind. … By the time they figured out a murder had occurred, William Greer was gone.

“OPERATION CATCH A TOE”

Nicki Bates was just 9 years old when she and her brothers shared memories of their mother with the television show, “America’s Most Wanted.”

NICKI MYERS (reading a poem on “America’s Most Wanted”): Our beloved Tammy, a daughter taken, lives shaken …

Bates hoped that viewers might recognize the man who had allegedly killed her mother and then disappeared: William Greer.

Peter Van Sant: Did it give you some hope?

Nicki Bates: It did.

Det. Sid Miller: Once we got him on “America’s Most Wanted,” we started getting tips.

Miller says that after the first mention of Greer on the show, he and his partner were finally beginning to learn about the fugitive’s first few days on the run.

Det. Sid Miller: The day after Greer … got out of jail … he went to his sister’s house … and basically said that he had done something bad. … and he wanted to change his life and he was leaving town. So, the sister had given him some money for that purpose.

From there, Greer had gone to Savannah, Georgia, to see his half-brother, Daniel Dobson. So, Miller and his partner did the same.

Dobson’s interview with detectives was recorded:

DANIEL DOBSON (interview with detectives):  He just said that he hit her with the gun, and it went off … He said she died in his arms, and … he freaked out, went out and buried her.

Det. Sid Miller: And buried her to where nobody would find her.

Peter Van Sant: That’s the phrase he used, where nobody would find —

Det. Sid Miller: — where nobody would find her.

DANIEL DOBSON (interview with detectives):  When he finally admitted what he did, I did everything I could to get him off this property that day.

Det. Sid Miller: He had taken Greer to … a truck stop … and just dropped him off there, and he hadn’t seen him since.

William Joseph Greer
William Joseph Greer

Nicki Bates


In July 2007, Greer had been on the run for six months, when he got a job as a cook at a deli in New Orleans, working alongside John Morales.

John Morales: He told me that his name was Billy. … when I tried to ask him what his last name was, he wouldn’t tell me what his last name was.

Morales says he and the man he knew as Billy got along so well they decided to room together. And Billy began to open up about his past.

John Morales: Billy told me that he had kids. He told me that he, that he had an ex-wife … and that his ex-wife wasn’t allowing him to see the kids and that, and that’s why he was traveling.

Morales says it wasn’t long before his new roommate began to drink heavily and became progressively stranger.

John Morales: He would start crying and say that he didn’t want to wind up in hell.

Even more disturbing says Morales, were Greer’s plans for the future.

John Morales: He, uh, would say that he wanted to live off grid … that he wanted to um find another wife, you know, at some point and, and have more kids. … and then he would take the downward spiral again…  say if I ever find out she’s cheating on me, I’ll kill her.

Then, says Morales, Greer began using drugs. The men parted ways and Morales moved to Florida. Weeks later, a friend from the deli called to say that the man they knew as “Billy” had just been featured on “America’s Most Wanted.” Morales was one of five tipsters who called police. But by the time detectives arrived to investigate, Greer was gone.

Left behind was his signature cowboy hat — a possible taunt aimed at his pursuers. It would take two more months before there was another credible tip. This time from Georgetown, Kentucky, where Greer had found God.

Pastor Connie Jackson-Osborne: He just came into the service one Sunday morning.

Pastor Connie Jackson-Osborne of the Victory Tabernacle Church says she knew Greer as “Billy Leslie.” He said he was new to the area and was looking for handyman work. He offered to help around the church.

Pastor Connie Jackson-Osborne: He seemed very nice, very personable. He got right in with different ones in the congregation, participated.

“Billy” even asked to be baptized. But when he learned that his photograph would be taken for posterity, Pastor Connie says he nearly backed out. But Greer changed his mind and allowed a photo to be taken of his baptism on Aug. 26, 2007.

myers-greer-baptism.jpg
William Greer aka “Billy Leslie” was photographed during his baptism in Georgetown, Kentucky, on  Aug. 26, 2007.

Pastor Connie Jackson-Osborne, Victory Tabernacle Church


One month later, a member of the congregation would see the now baptized “Billy” on “America’s Most Wanted.”

Peter Van Sant: And if I may quote one little passage from the Bible to you as a Pastor, “Even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light.”

Pastor Connie Jackson-Osborne: Yes, he does and … It was funny when I found out he was wanted, ’cause he was living right across the street from the police station.

Hiding in plain sight. But by the time investigators arrived, Greer had taken off again.

Deputy Marshal Cameron Welch: This guy literally thought that he could victimize not only Tammy, but everybody else that he encountered while he was on the run, and kind of just thumbing his nose in our face.

More than three years had gone by with no credible leads, when Cameron Welch – a deputy Marshal with the Southern District of Texas U.S. Marshals Service — joined the case. Welch followed up old leads, hoping for new information, dug deeper into Greer’s past, and found yet another ex-wife, who told detectives that Greer had abused her as well.

Deputy Marshal Cameron Welch: He was able to, um, convince these women … that he was just a great guy … and he would use them for everything that — that he needed, and then he would move on to the next one.

Welch spent two years chasing down new leads, but Greer was nowhere to be found.

Peter Van Sant: So where do you go from there?

Deputy Marshal Cameron Welch: Back to square one. Just keeping the pressure.

In 2012, Welch was assigned to another case. Deputy Marshal Leslie Ramin took over the now 5-year-long hunt for Greer — and named it “Operation Catch a Toe.”

Peter Van Sant: And why’d you name it that?

Deputy Marshal Leslie Ramin: William Greer was missing a toe.

Peter Van Sant: And how’d he lose that?

Deputy Marshal Leslie Ramin: I think it was a bicycling accident when he was younger.

Peter Van Sant (looking at a photo of Greer’s foot): This is the — this is the famous missing toe.

Deputy Marshal Cameron Welch: It’s the famous missing toe.

Peter Van Sant: Wow.

The Marshals believed that unique feature would eventually tip people off to Greer’s true identity.

Deputy Marshal Leslie Ramin: If you have a murderer in your house and … this murderer is missing a toe … they’re going to easily put two and two together.

A FUGITIVE’S TRAIL LEADS U.S. MARSHALS TO MEXICO

In late 2012, when Deputy U.S. Marshal Leslie Ramin took over the hunt for William Greer, he studied the case and investigated new leads with no luck. Then, in 2016, Ramin and his now associate investigator, Deputy Josh Wright, returned to the last place Greer had been seen. This time, the TV show “Crime Watch Daily” was helping keep the heat on the fugitive.

Deputy Marshal Leslie Ramin: We spent some time in Kentucky traveling, interviewing people following up on leads. … I pretty much was sure that he was using the railways to move around, hopping trains. And the last … good solid source, put him on a train going southbound. … And I said, “this guy’s in Mexico.”

Ramin asked to have the outlaw placed on the U.S. Marshal’s 15 Most Wanted list, which alerts law enforcement agencies worldwide to be on the lookout for Greer. A $25,000 reward was also offered for his arrest.

Deputy Marshal Leslie Ramin: And money helps loosen lips.

And it wasn’t long before that reward — and Ramin’s instincts — appeared to be paying off.

Deputy Marshal Josh Wright: We obtained information from a … reliable source that William Greer had set up a new life south of the border in Mexico.

The deputies would not tell “48 Hours” who that reliable source was, but someone in Mexico had called in a tip, telling investigators that they knew where Greer was hiding out.

Deputy Marshal Josh Wright: We investigated hundreds of tips over the course of this fugitive investigation. And so, we knew that it had to be verified.

But U.S. Marshals don’t have jurisdiction in Mexico, so “Operation Catch a Toe” was now in the hands of Mexican authorities, who checked out the tip. While the Marshal’s office was kept informed at every turn, Mexican police were now surveilling the man they all hoped was William Greer.

Deputy Marshal Cameron Welch: I can tell you … I did not sleep. Josh and I were anxiously awaiting … to find out what the results were.

The next morning, they got the confirmation they hoped for. The man spotted in Mexico was indeed William Greer. Now, he had to be captured.

Mexican authorities learned that Greer was living practically off the grid, down a dirt road, in the tiny southern town of Taxco. He had a wife and two young children.

Paulina Gomez: People tell me he was very reserved. He was a very nice, very polite, hardworking guy, but very reserved.

Paulina Gomez, a producer based in Mexico City recently traveled to Taxco for “48 Hours,” and learned that Greer had most likely been in Mexico for about six to seven years. He met his new wife while living in the Mexican state of Chiapas. By the time they moved to Taxco, they had an infant daughter and toddler son named William.

Peter Van Sant: He’s the biological father?

Paulina Gomez: Yes. Of these two kids.

By 2017, locals say Greer had been living in Taxco for about three years.

Tilo Perez: We called him “El Gringo.”

Paulina Gomez: You didn’t know his name?

Tilo Perez: No.

Tilo Perez lived next door to the fugitive and says he was a good neighbor.

Tilo Perez: He was calm, he … didn’t mess with anyone.

Deputy Marshal Josh Wright: We learned that he had a carpentry company. He was building furniture, and he employed a couple employees.

Greer had been a master of avoiding arrest, but on the morning of Nov. 28, 2017, his days on the run finally came to an end when Greer was taken by surprise by a swarm of undercover police.

U.S MARSHALS: (to reporters): U.S. Marshals Service would like to announce the arrest of William Joseph Greer.

Deputy Marshal Cameron Welch: He completely denied that it was him. I just wish I could have been there to see his face when they removed his shoe.

Peter Van Sant: They did remove the shoe?

Deputy Marshal Cameron Welch: Oh yeah.

Peter Van Sant: And what did they see?

Deputy Marshal Cameron Welch: The missing toe.

Peter Van Sant: Operation Catch a Toe —

Deputy Marshal Josh Wright: Correct (laughs).

Peter Van Sant: — had finally succeeded.

Deputy Marshal Josh Wright: That’s right.

Deputy Marshal Josh Wright: It was a good feeling.

Deputy Marshal Cameron Welch: And I wasn’t crying. He was crying (laughs). … We both teared up a little bit.

Deputy Marshal Josh Wright: I might have teared up.

Nicki Bates was 18 years old when she got the news that her mother’s killer had finally been captured.

Nicki Bates: I just cried. I just remember crying because it was not expected. It was just over — an overwhelming feeling.

Willian Greer arrest
Members of the U.S. Marshals Service, Southern District Texas, with William Greer. 

U.S. Marshals Service, Southern District of Texas


Greer was promptly flown to George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston, where he was arrested on U.S. soil.

Deputy Marshal Josh Wright (showing handcuffs) These were the handcuffs used on William Greer.

Peter Van Sant: And how satisfying was that?

Deputy Marshal Josh Wright: Extremely satisfying.

Leslie Ramin says Greer actually recognized him from all the TV coverage.

Deputy Marshal Leslie Ramin: He saw me and said, hey, “I know who you are. I’m your biggest fan” (laughs).

Deputy Marshal Cameron Welch: He was exactly how I imagined he’d be, very arrogant, very eager to tell us how he alluded us.

Deputy Marshal Josh Wright: And that’s really what we were interested in. As fugitive investigators, we wanted to know how, how did he get away for so long, and how did he get to Mexico?

The deputy Marshals say they always suspected that Greer had been getting around on 18-wheelers and trains.

Deputy Marshal Josh Wright: Greer confirmed that he did end up taking a train from Kentucky and he headed west, until he found another train heading south, and that’s how he ended up crossing into Mexico.

Ramin and Wright delivered Greer to the Sheriff’s office, where Sid Miller, now a Sergeant Investigator, attempted to interrogate him.

SGT. SID MILLER (interrogation): We’re trying to find Tammy, you know. … that’s really why you’re here, OK?

Miller tried to push Greer to tell him where he had buried Tammy Myers.

SGT. SID MILLER (interrogation):  I was hoping I — I’d be able to call the family tonight and give them the good news…

Greer suggested that he would cooperate.

WILLIAM GREER (interrogation): We’re gonna get this done, man. Uh, I’m not here to play around.

Instead, Greer asked for an attorney and shut down the interview.

WILLIAM GREER (interrogation): Now, whether you guys are willing to work with me or not, that’s yet to be seen. But I’m here to work with you guys. … But I need to talk to a lawyer.

With Greer now behind bars, it was now up to the Harris County District Attorney’s Office to try the case.

Nicki Bates: I was like, OK, we’re finally going to have some closure.

But what ended up happening stunned just about everyone.

A DAUGHTER’S DETERMINATION

It was now 2023, nearly six years since William Greer had been captured, and the now 58-year-old was still sitting in this jail awaiting trial. COVID and the legal process had slowed the proceedings to a crawl. Painful says Bates, who longed for justice, and finally locating her mother’s missing remains.

Nicki Bates: Recently, around the trial date … I would have dreams that … I was digging and I would just find her in the most random places.” 

Sid Miller was prepared to testify at trial.

Peter Van Sant: What’s the strongest evidence you have against William Greer?

Sgt. Sid Miller: The two children. … hearing what they heard.

Both of Greer’s sons, who believe they heard their father shoot and kill Tammy Myers, were on the witness list. And while Greer’s brother was now deceased, the prosecution had that recording of what he told detectives back in 2007.

DANIEL DOBSON (recording): He just said that he hit her with the gun, and it went off.

And then of course, there was Greer’s dashcam confession.

WILLIAM GREEER (dashcam): Oh my God. It’s the worst thing I ever did was look in her eyes and watch her die.

Sgt. Sid Miller: Coupled with obviously the evidence that we found at the house … the blood, the … bullets … seems like a strong case to me.

But Bates says the prosecution was nervous. Worried that they were missing a critical piece of evidence: Tammy Myers’ body. Only days before trial, Bates says she and her family were contacted by Assistant D.A. Stephany Abner about a potential plea deal to avoid a trial.

Nicki Bates: She said, would you all consider manslaughter if he tells you where she’s at? And I said, you know what, yes, we will. We just want to know where our mom’s at. … We want a resting place where we can go to, where our children can go to. … So, we took the deal because they also made it seem like there was not another choice, that he would probably walk free if we went to trial.

As a condition of the deal, Greer was now required to show detectives where he had buried Tammy Myers’ body.

Sgt. Sid Miller: I had to … check him out of the jail. … I had … our warrant team with us because … he was such a … flight risk.

Bates says when she heard where they all ended up, she was crushed. They were searching for her mother not far from where Greer first confessed to killing her, and way too close to the home Bates grew up in.

Nicki Bates: He walked up and down, um, the road in cuffs right next to my dad’s house.

That went on for three days, says Miller. Nothing was found. Investigators then called off the search. Greer still got his deal.

Nicki Bates: We were told he will get his deal only if he tells us where he buried her. … I think it’s bull crap. … and I think that he just, once again, is getting off for murdering her.

The District Attorney’s office declined “48 Hours”‘ requests for an interview but gave us this statement: “We believe Greer was acting in good faith and tried to lead law enforcement … to her body. So much time has passed, and the terrain has changed, but we believe he tried.” 

On Jan. 22, 2024, Greer appeared in court for sentencing. It had been 17 years since Bates laid eyes on him.

Nicki Bates: You know, everyone kept telling me he’s not going to even look at you. … He’ll be ashamed. … And … he walked into court, and he stared right at us.

Peter Van Sant: Were you staring back?

Nicki Bates: Yes.

Peter Van Sant: Did you make eye contact with him?

Nicki Bates: Yes. … I was just trying to let him know like, we are not giving up. We are not backing down. We are not scared of him.

Nicki Bates
Nicki Bates faces William Greer in court.

CBS News


Frustrated and angry, Bates gave a victim impact statement on behalf of her family.

NICKI BATES (addressing Greer in court): She trusted you. We trusted you. … We had to look at the man who murdered our mom, walk around our neighborhood, trying to remember where he put her body. How do you not remember? How has that not eaten at you every day since?

Nicki Bates: I don’t know what I was expecting. Maybe him to talk back. I don’t know, but I stopped, and I said, “do you? Do you remember?” And he just stared at me.

NICKI BATES (addressing Greer in court): You say you’re a changed man, that you’re a Christian, and if that’s the case, you’ll continue to talk and help us try to find her. You want forgiveness? That’s what I need. I need to know, and I need to find her.” 

Greer’s sentence for killing Tammy Myers and fleeing is 10 years.

With time served, he will be free in three years; perhaps even sooner.

Nicki Bates: Ten years for taking someone’s life away and then just disposing of them like garbage. That’s not enough.

Leslie Ramin:  If you ask me, he should be in jail forever.

Ramin, now retired, says Greer better behave.

Leslie Ramin: If he does anything, I’ll come back out of retirement. I’ll find him again.

Peter Van Sant: Are you worried that if he gets out and it could be as we are speaking now in as little as three years, there may be more victims?

Deputy Marshal Josh Wright: I’m concerned about that.

Peter Van Sant: Are you as well, Cameron?

Deputy Marshal Cameron Welch: Yes, sir.

THE SEARCH FOR TAMMY MYERS CONTINUES

Meanwhile, the search for Tammy Myers continues without law enforcement.

Texas EquuSearch is a nonprofit, volunteer, search and recovery organization, that offers their services to law enforcement and families for free.

Nicki Bates: Seeing all the volunteers out here … I don’t know any of them, and they have kept me updated and just, you know, made me feel so loved.

Nicki Bates: They prayed over us.

They have committed to helping a daughter on a mission.

Nicki Bates: But being out here, so close to home and possibly close to finding her is a little overwhelming.

It won’t be easy, says canine handler Brenda Peak.

Peter Van Sant: How large an area are you searching today?

Brenda Peak: Total, about four acres.

Peak says even highly trained dogs will have trouble detecting the scent of bones buried nearly two decades ago.

Brenda Peak: A lot of people won’t take this task because it is, it’s a difficult one, it’s challenging. 

On this day in February 2024, there were three cadaver dogs with handlers and more than 30 volunteers covering the four acres, and a spot that Bates and her dad requested to be searched

Nicki Bates: It takes a lot to not let it consume me. I try to focus on my kids and my husband, but they will tell you I’m very determined    … if I just have free time at home, I’m on my computer, looking at maps, looking at … old, you know, areas, what they looked like then, what they look like now.

Ryan Myers and Nicki Bates
Ryan Myers and daughter Nicki Bates watch as search crews look for their loved one’s remains. 

CBS News


After searching for about five hours, the team called it quits for the day. But there was a glimmer of hope. All three canines had reacted to something in the same area.

Nicki Bates: They think that it’s possible that he drove into this area … and that maybe he buried her somewhere over here since there are, all three dogs have picked up on this area.

But Texas Equusearch didn’t have the right tools to dig properly, so they committed to trying again. Until then, Bates will be out searching on her own.

Peter Van Sant: Do you believe she will one day be found?

Nicki Bates: I’m not sure. … I am trying to stay hopeful, but … between weather and animals and — if he’s telling the truth or not, that it’s — you know, it could be hard.

Ryan Myers: I’m hoping we can — we can put this to rest and — and give Tammy a place and get these kids some closure in their life, somewhere they can pay their respects.

Nicki Bates: My kids are, they’re young, but they are fully aware of what’s happening. And … they just want so badly for her to be found. So, I’m just trying to stay hopeful for myself, but also for my children and, you know, just keep looking ’cause I don’t want to give up.

Immediately after being sentenced, Greer became eligible for parole. It was denied.

His next parole review is in 2026.


Produced by Judy Rybak. Michelle Sigona and Jenna Jackson are the development producers. Anthony Venditti is the content research manager. Doreen Schechter is the producer-editor. Emily Wichick Hourihane is the field producer. Jud Johnston and Ken Blum  are the editors. Anthony Batson is the senior producer. Nancy Kramer is he executive story editor. Judy Tygard is the executive producer.

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