Wayne Williams

(Atlanta Child Murder)

Early Life

Wayne Williams was born and raised in Atlanta's Dixie Hills neighborhood where most of the killings took place. Williams was an aspiring DJ, he ran a radio station in his parents' house. He was well known for scouting young musicians, especially teenagers. He was said to have been homosexual, attracted to black guys.

First Suspected

Williams was suspected to be the murderer of 20 kids from 1979 to 1981 in Atlanta, Georgia, although he was only convicted of killing 2 adults.

He first became a suspect in the child murder case in May 1981. His car was spotted directly above the sound of a loud splash heard in the river by a stake out team. He was stopped by police and questioned, and claimed that he was going out of town to audition a young singer. This alibi fell apart after police found that the address and phone number he gave them didn't exist.

Three days later, the body of 27 year-old Nathaniel Cater, who had been missing for days, turned up in the river. The medical examiner on the case ruled he had died of "probable" asphyxia, but never authoritatively said he had been strangled.

Trial and Conviction

Williams' trial began on January 6, 1982. The prosecution's case relied on an abundance of circumstantial evidence. During the two-month trial, prosecutors matched 19 different sources of fibers from Williams' environment: his bedspread, bathroom, gloves, clothes, carpets, dog and an unusual tri-lobal carpet fiber to a number of victims.

The jury deliberated for 10 hours before finding him guilty of murder. He was then sentenced to two consecutive terms of life imprisonment.