Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The Atlanta Child Murders

Wayne Bertram Williams

Wayne Bertram Williams
Wayne Bertram Williams

Wayne Williams, born on May 27, 1958, was the only child of schoolteachers Homer and Faye Williams. The Williams family lived in Dixie Hills, a neighborhood where many of Atlanta's murder victims had once lived or from where they had disappeared.

His parents doted on him and spent every cent they had supporting his entrepreneurial ventures. From a young age, Williams dreamed of making it big in the broadcasting and entertainment industry. A talented and motivated young man, Williams began his own radio station at the age of sixteen from his parent's home.

He graduated from Fredrick Douglas High School with an honors degree and attended Georgia State University for one year before dropping out. In his late teens he worked for a popular radio station and appeared in [Jet] magazine along with his employer, Benjamin Hooks, an influential black leader at the time who eventually headed the NAACP. Williams spent much of his time marketing his own station and promoting local musical talent, performing odd jobs to fund his ideas and experimenting with electronics, which was his hobby.

Williams had also sold video footage and photographs of area accidents, such as fires, car accidents and even one plane crash, to local television stations to earn money. He would hear about many of the accidents from his police radio scanner, which allowed him to make it to scenes of accidents sometimes before the police had even arrived.

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