The Atlanta Police Department has opened a special phone line for tips in the four-decade-old Atlanta Child Murders cases following authorities’ recent announcement that old evidence will be retested with modern methods.
The tip line is 404-546-2603.
“Atlanta Child Murders” is the collective term for at least 25 African-American children and adults found dead in 1979 through 1981 around metro Atlanta, including in the areas of Brookhaven and Buckhead. Wayne Bertram Williams is serving a life sentence in state prison after being convicted of killing two adults in the murder wave, and police at the time alleged that evidence connected to many of the child killings as well, but never charged him with those crimes. Williams has maintained his innocence of any killing.
One victim who was found in a local area was Patrick Rogers, 16, whose body was discovered in the Chattahoochee River on the Cobb County side of the Paces Ferry Road bridge on Dec. 7, 1980, according to media reports at the time. Another was Patrick Baltazar, 11, who was found dead Feb. 13, 1981 in the Corporate Square office park in what is now the city of Brookhaven. Police at the time attributed both killings to Williams.
Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms announced a review of evidence in the cases on March 21 and has said a city commission will develop a memorial to the victims. The announcement came on the eve of the broadcast of a new documentary series about the cases on the Investigation Discovery network produced by Will Packer, a prominent movie executive who lives in Atlanta.