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Williams’ defense fails to have evidence suppressed

By Walter Geiger Interesting evidentiary facts in the murder case of Jamarris Williams emerged during a pretrial hearing on a motion to suppress evidence that was held in Lamar superior court Dec. 16. The motion was denied by Judge Bill Fears. Williams allegedly summoned the cab of John Dixson, stabbed Dixson in the throat and left him to die in a southeast Lamar County ravine in March, 2012. Williams is charged with malice murder, three counts felony murder, armed robbery, two counts aggravated assault and hijacking a motor vehicle. Testifying at the hearing were BPD investigators Ernie McWhorter and Al Moltrum. Public defender Douglas Smith sought to have evidence found at a trailer Williams shared with Christa Evans at Fuller’s Trailer Park suppressed. In particular, Smith questioned affidavits presented to chief magistrate William Thomas on March 16, 2012. McWhorter presented affidavits in support of three search warrants and Judge Thomas signed all three at 4:44 p.m. The search of the trailer was warranted, the state argued, because Evans had stated that Williams came to the trailer at 6:27 a.m. woke her up, instructed her not to turn on the light and said, “They think I did something. I didn’t do it. They think I killed the cab man.” According to documents and testimony, Williams then started crying and left the trailer. A warrant for a second search at 5 Miami Street was issued at the same time. That was the home of Williams’ brother Jenez Williams and his girlfriend Alicedonia Jones. The pair had told Moltrum early on March 16 that Jamarris Williams had come to the home and changed clothes, changing into clothing borrowed from Jenez Williams. They said bloody clothes were at the home, a red stain was on the couch and a table had been moved under the entrance to the attic. They also said money with blood on it in a plastic bag had been thrown into the woods after some of it was spent at Sammie’s and in “the alley” – a known location for drug transactions in Barnesville. Moltrum got consent from Jenez Williams and Jones, searched the home and found none of the items mentioned. Smith argued Judge Thomas was not told of this search at the time he signed the warrants that afternoon. He termed these “significant material omissions”. “We contend the warrant to search (the trailer) was not a warrant. It is void on its face. It is insufficient. A lot of information was left off that affidavit,” Smith argued. Assistant district attorney Scott Johnston argued that point specifically but questioned Moltrum in general on suspects. Moltrum testified that, by the time the warrants were sought, Williams was a suspect and that it is routine to search the home of a suspect. ”In fact, the place you are most likely to find evidence is where a suspect lays his head. Is that correct,” Johnston asked. Moltrum answered in the affirmative. In the end the judge agreed and the motion was denied. The information in the affidavits for the warrants and testimony during the hearing revealed some of the evidence against Williams. Moltrum said police knew Dixson was missing by 11:30 p.m. on March 15. “We issued a missing persons lookout. We were riding the town looking. I thought Mr. Dixson had had a wreck. We put out the word we were looking for him,” the investigator said. At 5:45 a.m. on March 16, Jenez Williams and Jones asked to speak to an officer and Moltrum met them at a home on Cary J. Buckner Street near the police station. That’s when they told him of the bloody clothes and other evidence at 5 Miami Street and Moltrum later did the consent search. Jenez Williams and Jones told Moltrum that an Anthony Wilson had told them “something had happened to the cab man”. The second affidavit in question at the hearing contained damaging statements from Steven Ruffin and Deanna Jackson. Ruffin told investigators he called Dixson and his cab on March 15 to take him to a home at 182 Howard Road and Jamarris Williams was in the car with him at the time. Also in the cab was a Nancy Williams. The home on Howard Road was subsequently searched. Jackson told officers Jamarris Williams dropped Dixson’s cab off at her home on Forsyth-Yatesville Road and that there was blood on the seat. Dixson’s body was found in a roadside ravine on Forsyth-Yatesville Road on March 16. Johnston argued effectively with perhaps the most damaging piece of testimony against Williams, noting he told his girlfriend that people were saying he “killed the cab man” before Dixson’s body was found. ”At that point, we had a missing persons case,” Johnston said. The trial is set for early February in the Monroe County Justice Center. Williams appeared in court in an orange jail jumpsuit, shower shoes, handcuffs and was shackled at the wrists and ankles. He showed no emotion during the hearing.

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