Summer of Terror

Muriel Primo

Summary of Case

Matthew and Tyler Williams committed three main crimes over the summer of 1999. Their first crime was setting fire to three Synagogues in Sacremento, California. The next crime committed was the murders of Gary Matson and Winfred Mauder in Redding, California. The Williams brothers murdered the two males because they were an openly gay couple. The third and last crime the brother committed before they got caught was the burning of a medical clinic that performed abortions in Sacremento, California. All three crimes where committed in a span of three days.

Evidence & Explanation (How it helped solve the case)

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Oil Jugs

Similar to the Mobil oil jug from Williams’ Palo Cedro residence, Dog hairs and feathers on the mouth of the oil jugs and rags tied to the oil jugs were similar to animals at the Palo Cedro residence. The brothers place of living had matching things to the scenes of crime.

Summary of Each Crime

Burning of Synagogues

Who: Matthew and Tyler Williams

When: June 18, 1999

What: Arsonists destroyed the library and damaged the sanctuary at the B’Nai Israel Synagogue in Sacramento, California. Within the next 45 minutes, fires were set at two other synagogues, Beth Shalom and Kennesset Israel.

How: Three black one gallon Mobil oil jugs with oil/gas liquid
Why: The Williams brothers were very strict on Christianity only and where white supremacists

Murder of Gary Matson and Winfred Mauder

Who: Matthew and Tyler Williams

When: July 1, 1999

What: Brothers murdered both males in their sleep

How: With gunshots to the head with a .22 caliber gun

Why: The couple was openly gay

Burning of Medical Clinic

Who: Matthew and Tyler Williams

When: July 2, 1999

What: Brothers burnt down a medical clinic

How: Oil jugs filled with gas/oil liquid

Why: They burned it because the clinic performed abortions and since the brothers were very into their Christian beliefs they looked at abortion as wrong and dealt with it how "God told them to"

Daubert Hearing

Definition: A Daubert Hearing is an evaluation by a trial judge on the admissibility of testimony/evidence as presented by a defined expert. Basically it's the question of the technique used to examine or take evidence. Defendants wanted this to happen so they could throw out evidence so it wouldn't be used in the trail.

Role it played: The attorneys for the defendants made a motion for a Daubert hearing in forensic hair analysis, forensic paint analysis, forensic glass analysis, and forensic fiber analysis. They claimed was present technology had changed significantly over the years and was not universally accepted by the scientific community. Declarations were written by Scott Ryland, Florida Department of Law Enforcement, addressing acceptance of forensic paint analysis , Jose Almirall, Florida International University, addressing acceptance of forensic glass analysis, Hal Deadman, George Washington University, addressing acceptance of forensic hair and fiber analysis. They addressed the issues raised by the defense attorneys in their bid for a Daubert hearing. These were incorporated into the arguments by the federal prosecutors against having a Daubert hearing in this case. This request for a hearing was denied by the Federal Court judge.