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The Appeals of Wayne Williams

The Atlanta Child-Killings Case


Wayne Williams

Wayne Williams

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Between 1979 and 1981, 29 children and young black men were killed in a series of murders that terrorized the community in a case known as the "Atlanta Child-Killings." Wayne Williams was arrested in the case and in 1982 was convicted for the murders of Jimmy Ray Payne, 21, and Nathaniel Cater, 27, and investigators closed the books on more than two dozen other cases after his conviction.

Williams, who is black, has always maintained his innocence, claiming that he was framed for the murders to cover-up Ku Klux Klan involvement in the killings to avoid a race war in Atlanta. But he has yet to win any of his several appeals for a new trial.

Latest Developments

Hairs Link Williams to Atlanta Child Killings
June 26, 2007
Dog hairs found on five of the notorious "Atlanta Child Killings" victims match those of convicted killer Wayne Williams' dog, District Attorney Paul Howard said, disputing defense claims that the DNA tests were inconclusive. "All seven hairs tested are the same as Sheba's, the dog of Wayne Williams," Howard said.

Previous Developments

Wayne Williams Granted DNA Request
Feb. 27, 2007
A Georgia judge has ordered DNA testing of evidence used in the trial of Wayne Williams, who was accused of killing 29 blacks, mostly boys, in the Atlanta Child Killings case of 1979 and 1981.

DNA Testing Approved for Wayne Williams
Jan. 30, 2007
Georgia prosecutors have agreed to allow DNA testing of dog hair which was used in the 1982 trial of Wayne Williams.

Wayne Williams Seeks DNA Testing
Nov. 29, 2007
The man convicted in the Atlanta Child Killings case in 1982 is now seeking to have DNA testing performed on dog hair, human hair and blood evidence collected during the investigation.

Atlanta Child Killer's Appeal Rejected
Feb. 10, 2007
A federal judge rejected an appeal by Wayne Williams that prosecutors withheld evidence during his 1982 trail and several other claims, including ineffective work by his original trial lawyers.

Police Chief to Reopen Atlanta Child-Killing Cases
May 9, 2005
The Dekalb County Police Chief, who was an investigator in 1979-1981 when the Atlanta area was terrorized by the murder of dozens of young black children, has decided to reopen the investigation into four of those murders which occurred in his jurisdiction.

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