On 15 June 1984, the body of
Amos Norwood was found. He had been beaten to death. Terrance (Terry)
Williams was brought to trial in early 1986, and convicted of
Arguing for the death penalty, the state presented evidence that he
had been convicted of armed robbery committed when he was 16 and the
murder of a 51-year-old man, Herbert Hamilton, when he was 17.
In mitigation, the defence presented three
witnesses – the mother, girlfriend, and a cousin of the defendant – who
testified as to his good character.
Except for a
passing reference by the mother that her second husband was “very
abusive” to her son, there was no other evidence presented of any abuse
suffered by Terry Williams. The defence lawyer urged the jury to
consider his client’s young age – 18 years and three months – at the
time of the crime.