ROBERT LEE TATUM SR., known to family and friends as "Bobby" was born in Camden on April 21, 1935. He was educated in the Camden City Public School System, graduating from Camden High School in 1954. Soon after he married his wife Margaret. Bobby Tatum was appointed to the Camden Police Department in the late 1950s, and had been promoted to the rank of Sergeant in the Detective Bureau before taking a position with the Camden County Prosecutor's Office, retiring on October of 1992 as a lieutenant in the Major Crimes Unit.
Hospitalized with a heart condition, Robert Lee Tatum Sr. passed away at Cooper Hospital in Camden on March 14, 2015. He was buried at Harleigh Cemetery in Camden. He was survived by his wife Margaret "Dale" Tatum, son Robert Jr., daughters Donna Drummonds and Maggie Tatum, eight grandchildren and a great-grandson, four of his siblings and a large circle of friends and family.
Philadelphia Inquirer - February 2, 1986
Probe Of '77 Killing Hailed
By E. F.
Two detectives who spent more than eight years investigating the slaying of an 8-year-old Haddon Township boy were scheduled to be honored yesterday by the township Policemen's Benevolent Association for dedication and hard work.
The investigators, Detective Edward Slimm and Detective Sgt. Robert Tatum of the Camden County prosecutor's office, were to be honored in a ceremony at the Westmont Fire Hall.
The victim, Robert "Bobby" Lee Almand 3d, was a first grader at St. John's Parochial School in Collingswood when he disappeared from his parents' home on Lakeshore Drive on May 30, 1977. After dinner that night, he headed for a nearby park to play.
Thirteen hours later, his body was found in a shallow ditch in the park. An autopsy showed he died of brain damage caused by multiple blows to the head by either a fist or a blunt object. He appeared to have a bite mark on the left ear.
Dennis G. Wixted, the first assistant Camden County prosecutor, said there was evidence that a sexual act had taken place before or during the boy's death.
On Sept. 17, David Stannard, 44, of East Camden, was arrested and charged with murder in the death of the boy.
A grand jury is reviewing the evidence, and a vote on whether to indict Stannard is expected by the middle of this month, Wixted said.
Wixted would not say what evidence police had against Stannard.
"I always knew that some day it (an arrest) would come about," said Slimm, 40, a detective in the prosecutor's office who worked as a patrol sergeant for the Haddon Township Police Department at the time of the arrest.
The slain boy's parents praised the two detectives' hard work and tenacity in investigating the case.
Slimm, a lifelong resident of Haddon Township, and Tatum, a native of Camden, interviewed more than 500 people during the investigation.
"Thank you is not a good enough word to say," said Shirley Almand, the boy's mother.
"I felt that they were very dedicated, and they really hung in there with this thing," said the father, Robert L. Almand Jr.
Wixted said, "They're good men, and it's consistent with the way they do their jobs all the time. They're both conscientious and hard-working, and I am similarly blessed with other detectives with the same qualities in the homicide division."
Stannard's was arrested on Sept. 17 was for a parole violation, and he was charged later that night in the Almand killing.
Stannard was on parole after serving five years of a 20-year prison sentence resulting from sexual assaults on three boys. He was paroled in October 1983 from the state prison for sex offenders at Avenel.
One of the conditions of Stannard's parole was that he would not associate with any boys.
He was arrested when Tatum and Slimm saw Stannard enter his home at 1038 North 31st Street in Camden with a boy, who they later learned was a 13-year-old from Camden, authorities said. Stannard is in Trenton State Prison, and is serving time for the parole violation..
Camden Courier-Post - April 18, 2015
Philadelphia Inquirer - April 19, 2015
Robert Tatum, 79, retired detective
Robert L. Tatum Sr., 79, of Camden, who retired in 1992 as a detective lieutenant in the Camden County Prosecutor Office, died of heart problems Saturday, March 14, at Cooper University Hospital in Camden..
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