5 August 2014 | a_baron
The Atlanta Child Murders
There have been many documentaries either about or which cover the Atlanta Child Murders, but this is by far the most detailed. It includes interviews with Wayne Williams himself, the 93 year old former appellate judge who wrote the dissenting opinion on his first appeal, police officers and many others, as well as much archive footage.
At the end of the programme, the viewer is asked to give his or her own verdict. The original audience verdict was guilty, 69%; innocent, 4%; not proved, 27%. Even his defence attorney gave him only a not proved.
In fact, although some of the evidence against him was tainted, the case against Williams was far stronger than is generally believed, and DNA testing – which had not of course been invented at the time – serves only to strengthen this case. It is possible that he did not murder all the victims attributed to him, but he was tried only for the murders of two adults, including his last victim. The evidence concerning at least two of the child victims looks extremely compelling, something that is brought out here.
Wayne Williams may have been the unlikeliest of suspects, but many serial killers are, witness the people who refused to believe in the guilt of Ted Bundy, or the inoffensive Dennis Nilsen – who would have believed he had not only skeletons in his cupboard but bodies in the attic?
Although it will almost certainly not end the speculation, this documentary is to all intents and purposes the final nail in the coffin of this alleged miscarriage of justice.