Summer of Terror Analysis

by Makenna Edge

Crimes and Evidence

*B'Nai Israel Synagogue in Sacramento, California

June 18th, 1999
In incomplete attempt to burn the Synagogue perps used three black one gallon Mobil oil jugs to soak the walls, piano, alter area, and seating areas of the sanctuary. After soaking the premises the perps ignited the accelerant. Luckily, the fire extinguished itself after a few minutes, but the library of the building was beyond repair.


  1. Wooden crate with news paper at the bottom
  2. Anti-Jewish propaganda flyers that blamed the Jews for NATO intervention in the Serbia-Bosnia conflict.
  3. Three black one-gallon Mobil oil jugs with "Delvac 1300 Super" labels (multiple pieces of evidence was also removed from the jugs).

  • Paint chips with light blue top coat over a red layer
  • Red plastic chip
  • White cotton strips of fabric
  • White and brown dog hairs
  • Multiple white and brown feathers
  • Multiple fibers that varied in color

*Happy Valley, California

July 1st, 1999

Gary Matson and Winfred Mauder, an openly gay couple, was murdered. No convincing evidence was left behind, but the couples vehicle along with some credit cards were stolen. Later on July 3rd, 1999 the couples car was found in an abandoned Oroville area. The car reeked of gasoline.
Later, Gary Matson's stolen credit card was used to purchase ammunition. The purchase was scheduled to be shipped to a UPS store in Yuba, California where police caught the Williams bothers picking up the package ( July 7th, 1999). When the Police continues to search their car they found many weapons including the one that killed Gary Matson. The Williams brothers were then arrested for murder.


  • Weapon used to kill Gary and Winfred
  • Use of a stolen credit card

*Medical Clinic in Sacramento, California

July 3rd, 1999

An office building housing a medical clinic that preformed abortions was set fire. This arsenic attack was later linked to the synagogue fire.


The evidence from the Medical Center wasn't sufficient until the police found and raided the Williams brothers car July 7th, 1999. This is the evidence used to link them back to the crime:

  • Paint on the blade of the Black Pry bar in the Williams’ vehicle similar to the door from the medical clinic
  • Paint on the broken glass of the door of the medical clinic similar to the pry bar paint
  • Glass on the pry bar similar to the glass from the window in the door of the medical clinic
  • Glass on the floor of Matson vehicle similar to the glass from the medical clinic
  • Fibers on the jumpsuit recovered from Palo Cedro residue similar to the upholstery of the Matson vehicle


Once the police tracked the purchase made on Gary's credit card they were able to raid the Williams brothers car. The evidence found in the car linked the brothers back to the three crimes explained above. Because 99% of the evidence was trace evidence, the Defense wanted to use a Daubert Ruling...

Define: Daubert Ruling

Under the Judges discretion one is able to ask for a Daubert Ruling. This means that they believe the evidence found was either corrupted by testing, or is not 100% accurate against the perp. If there is proof the evidence is corrupt or not sufficient, the judge can order the evidence to be thrown out of the investigation. This means the evidence is no longer able to be held against the perp in the court room and cannot play a role in his or her conviction.
...The court denied the Daubert Ruling because the defense did not provide sufficient evidence that the evidence was corrupt. The Williams brothers ended up being charged with multiple counts of arson, hate crimes, and murder.