Six years later, murders remain unsolved

Published 12:03 am Thursday, February 18, 2016

NATCHEZ — For the families of the Fenwick double homicide victims, it’s been a long six years.

“We still haven’t gotten any justice, any closure on this,” said Jennifer Lyles, the daughter of victim Carl Williams, 50. “His birthday would have been Feb. 22. He would have been 57.”

Wednesday marked six years since the killing on an evening several people got together in the residence at 5 East St. for a casual gathering.

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At 11:45 p.m., two gunmen burst into the residence, guns blazing. In addition to Williams, a young woman — Stephanie Anderson, 19 — was killed in the chaos that followed. Anderson was shot while helping Tina Garner, then 16, in a move to escape through a window. Garner was also wounded in the shooting.

The shooters also attacked a fourth person, Dora Lee, 39, striking her repeatedly in the head with a gun. Lee died a month later, but her death has not been officially linked to the attack.

Coroner James Lee said at the time of her death Dora Lee had been reported to have periodically experienced seizures and dizziness, including on the day of her death.

Three other people were in the East Street residence that night, but were able to escape without injury.

The Adams County Sheriff’s Office had three persons of interest in the case, but no one has ever been officially charged. A reward for more information was offered in 2012, but did not ultimately prove fruitful.

Investigators said at the time of the killings they believed the motive for the attack was a $52,000 disability settlement Williams had received.

Wednesday members of Williams’ family tried to surround each other with love and give support on the anniversary of his death, but knowing the killers are still free makes that difficult, Lyles said.

“It is very hard. We walk around every day speaking to people and not knowing who has done this,” she said.

“It is hard living everyday life not knowing who has taken your father’s life. You try to get on, but it is hard. You don’t know you are surrounded by.”

Sheriff Travis Patten said Wednesday his office has recently picked the matter back up, and that he has spoken with his investigators and the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation.

“When I was elected, that was one of the things I wanted re-looked at — not just as a law enforcement officer, but as a resident. I remember when it happened, and I was troubled by it then, and it still bothers me,” Patten said. “It is heavy on my mind, and I would love to solve it.”

Investigators had some good leads on the case in 2010, he said, but now, “it is a matter of breaking the code of silence on the street.”

Anyone with information about the incident can call the Adams County Sheriff’s Office at 601-442-2752 and speak to Patten or Maj. Jerry Brown.