Police records recently obtained by lawyers for Wayne Williams* have now confirmed what politically aware people have asserted all along: that it was the ku klux klan that carried out the serial murders of the Black children in Atlanta between 1979 and 1981. These records reveal that the government authorities knew exactly who was carrying out the murders at the time, but refused to arrest the killers and have protected them from prosecution ever since. The documents also shed more light on the extent of the collaboration between the police and the klan in terrorizing the people. The identity of the person who leaked these documents is unknown to us. We presume that this leak of secret information is the result of a factional dispute within the police department, designed to embarrass and weaken certain forces in the department and the city administration.

* Wayne Williams, a Black man, was falsely blamed for all the Atlanta child killings. In a trial marked by fabricated testimony and suppressed evidence, he was convicted of killing two Black adults; the other cases were closed.

The Systematic Murder of Black Children

During a twenty three month period between 1979 and 1981 over 30 Black children were killed in Atlanta, terrorizing the Afro-American population. In July, 1980, after 14 children had been murdered, the mothers of some of the victims formed the Committee to Stop the Children’s Murders. They pointed out that a systematic campaign of murder was taking place and denounced the Atlanta police for failing to seriously investigate any of the killings. At first the police denied that there was any connection between the killings. The murders continued, with one child disappearing about every twenty-five days. People who lived in and around the Techwood housing project and the other poor Afro-American neighborhoods where the victims were kidnapped generally assumed that the klan or a similar racist organization was responsible.

Atlanta city officials created a highly publicized commission to investigate the murders. It is now clear that the main purpose of this commission was to cover up the fact that klansmen were carrying out these murders. Atlanta police commissioner Lee Patrick Brown told the people: “We can’t say the murders here are racially motivated because we don’t know the motivation.” The FBI, claiming to have used “scientific methods” to draw up a “psychological profile” of the killer, declared that he was a Black man from a broken family. The commission even paid for a “psychic” to come to Atlanta. She claimed that she could “see” the killer and backed up the FBI’s assertion that he was Afro-American.

Special attention was given to dispelling the idea that the klan was involved. The FBI declared that there was no indication of a “group effort” in the murders. In June, 1981, Georgia Governor Busbee and Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) officials announced with great fanfare that they had thoroughly investigated the activity of the klan in Georgia and had concluded that it did not present a serious threat to the people of Georgia. Dr. Joseph Lowrey, the traitorous liar who heads the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, was called upon to support this idea, telling the people that he did not believe the klan had anything to do with the murders.

It has now been confirmed that police and government officials not only knew that the klan was committing the murders but, in fact, knew the specific individuals responsible.

The Evidence Against the Klan

The evidence that exposes the klan’s responsibility for the murders is contained in police documents. The most illuminating of these were enclosed in a package “anonymously” sent to Wayne Williams’ lawyers.

The evidence centers around the Sanders family. Members of this family belong to the National States Rights Party / New Order of the Ku Klux Klan (NSRP), which is headquartered in Marrieta, an Atlanta suburb. Don Sanders is National Secretary of the NSRP and his father, Carleton, and five of his brothers, Charles, Terry, Ricky, Jerry and James, are members of the organization. The NSRP, headed by J.B. Stoner and Ed Fields, is one of the most rabid racist and fascist organizations in this country.

Members of the Sanders family have long criminal records including convictions for child molestation, murder, burglary, assault and battery, wife beating, statutory rape, armed robbery and narcotics charges. They are long time drug dealers.

The police documents include statements of police agents closely associated with the Sanders family. One of these operatives reported that members of the family told him that the klan was going to execute one Black boy a month, and after killing 20 children they were going to start killing Black women. This informant reported that Charles Sanders had pointed out to him a 14-year-old Black youth named Lubie Geter and said “See that little Black …? I’m going to get him I’m going to kill him I’m going to choke the Black … to death.” Several weeks later Geter was found strangled to death.

There is other evidence linking the Sanders family to Lubie Geter’s murder. Geter was last seen in a shopping center near where the Sanders family lives. An eyewitness saw Geter get into a car with a tall white man with a jagged scar on his neck on the day he disappeared. Carleton Sanders is tall and has a jagged scar on his neck. Another witness saw Geter on the same day in a blue Ford with two white men. Charles Sanders drove a blue Ford. Hairs of a Siberian husky dog were found on Geter’s body. Charles Sanders owned a Siberian husky.

Another victim, 11-year-old Earl Lee Terrell, was with Lubie Geter when Geter incurred Charles Sanders’ wrath by accidentally running into his parked car with a go-cart. Terrell disappeared near the same shopping center where Geter was abducted. Besides Terrell, four other victims were friends of Lubie Geter’s.

Twelve-year-old Charles Stephens, the 15th victim, was found murdered in a trailer park frequented by members of the Sanders family. On his body caucasian head hairs were found, along with more Siberian husky hairs. Altogether, husky hairs were found on the bodies of at least fifteen of the murdered children.

Dozens of witnesses reported seeing men dressed as police or security guards or wearing other types of uniforms with many of the young victims the last time they were seen alive. The Sanders family kept a stockpile of police and other uniforms.

Another informant told police that “Don Sanders had direct knowledge of who was responsible for the killings.” On April 1, 1981 the following telephone conversation between Don and Terry Sanders was recorded by a police wiretap:

Don: “…I might get out and ride around a little bit, and I might come by there.”

Terry: “Go find you another little kid, another little kid?”

Don: “Yeah, scope out some places. We’ll see you later.”

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