Monroe County

1984 cold case sees new developments with upcoming trial

Rochester, New York – The case against Timothy Williams, charged with the heinous crime of raping and killing a 14-year-old girl in 1984, is set to see its second trial beginning on February 27. This development comes in the wake of a significant setback in the judicial process, as the previous trial was abruptly halted due to juror misconduct.

The initial trial faced a major hurdle last week when the presiding judge was compelled to declare a mistrial. This decision was taken following undisclosed actions by more than one juror that were deemed inappropriate. A mistrial typically occurs under circumstances where the jury fails to reach a unanimous verdict or when jurors engage in activities that contravene courtroom regulations.

The arrest of Williams in 2020 marked a breakthrough in a case that had remained unresolved for nearly four decades. Wendy Jerome, the young victim, had left her Denver Street home on Thanksgiving night to visit a friend. Tragically, her body was later discovered near School 33 on Webster Avenue, leading to a long-standing investigation.

A critical component in identifying Williams as the prime suspect was the use of Familial DNA testing. This innovative technique involves the construction of a family tree to pinpoint potential suspects when direct DNA matches are inconclusive. The upcoming trial will undoubtedly reignite discussions on the use of such advanced forensic methods in solving cold cases.

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