In 1981, Wayne Bertram Williams was convicted and received two life sentences for the killing of Nathaniel Cater (27) and Jimmy Ray Payne (21) at the age of 23.
What We Know:
- Williams was also implicated and the prime suspect in the case of the Atlanta child serial killer aka the “Atlanta Monster”. The Atlanta Monster was behind the unsolved abduction and murder of more than 20 to 30 black children, primarily young men, from 1979 to 1981.
- The Grio reported that he was denied parole due to insufficient amount of time served and the nature of his offense.
- There were no weapons or fingerprints found. However, 19 sources of hair and fibers were found on the two victims that were found in Williams’ home and car. The fibers tested were linked to his bedspread, carpet, and dog.
- In 2010, DNA forensics performed testing on scalp hairs found on the body of 11-year-old victim Patrick Baltazar (which wasn’t available in 1981). This gave a 98 percent probability that hairs found on the victim belonged to Williams.
- On May 22, 1981, a police surveillance team was watching the James Jackson Parkway bridge, which spans over the Chattahoochee River. This is where many of the missing victims’ bodies were found. Around 3am, Williams’ vehicle was the first vehicle sighted leaving the bridge after hearing a loud splash. When Williams was questioned his alibi, it didn’t check out. A couple of days, later the body of Nathaniel Cater was found by the river.
- Filmmakers of the 10 episode podcast, “Atlanta Monster”, have many doubts on the evidence against Williams. Through their research, they found that the GBI, Georgia Bureau of Investigations, withheld recorded tapings which implicated a member of the Ku Klux Klan and white supremacist, Charles T. Sanders. He was also an early suspect who once praised the murders in the Atlanta serial killer killings in recorded conversations.
According to the Dayton Daily News, the Atlanta mayor and chief of police announced that they are reopening the case and retesting any evidence to bring a closure to the case.