Wayne Williams

Zach Finder

Who is Wayne Williams?

  • born on May 27, 1958
  • raised in Atlanta's Dixie Hills neighborhood of Northwest Atlanta
  • Parents were Homer and Faye Williams
  • graduated from Douglass High school and developed a keen interest in radio and journalism
  • he constructed his own carrier-current radio station
  • Murders started in 1979

The Case

On May 24,1981, Nathaniel Cater's body, who had disappeared a few days earlier, was found in the Chattahoochee River. The medical examiner predicted the cause of death as being asphyxia. He was unable to establish the time frame in which Cater died. So, it was not really known exactly how Cater had died or when. The medical examiner obliged the police by stating that Cater had been dead just long enough for Wayne Williams to have thrown him off the bridge several days earlier. Hair and Fibers were used to connect him with his victims.

Fibers in cases

Fiber evidence is often used to corroborate other evidence in a case. it is used to support other testimony and validate other evidence presented at a trial. In this case other evidence and other aspects of the trial were important but were used to support and complement the fiber evidence.

Fibers on victims

Fibers were found in victims hair. Examiners initially were hoping to find the origin from which these fibers came from, and find the person responsible. they sent what they had found to chemist to see if they could determine what it was. they came to the conclusion that it was from some kind of carpet. they also determined the type of fiber and its manufacturer. this was important because the carpet in Williams apartment was similar to that found on the body and his carpets was almost one of a kind for that area.

probability

  • carpet only made for one year
  • 16,397 square yards of carpet containing that fiber
  • sold to retailers in 10 southeastern states
  • By assuming that this carpet was installed in one room, averaging 12 feet by 15 feet in size, per house, and also assuming that the total sales of carpet were divided equally among the 10 southeastern states, then approximately 82 rooms with this carpet could be found in the state of Georgia
  • 638,995 occupied housing units in the Atlanta metropolitan area in at the time
  • finding a house with a room having carpet like Williams’s carpet was determined to be 1 chance in 7,792