Home CBS News Jerry Michael Williams Murder: Who Killed Him and Why?

Jerry Michael Williams Murder: Who Killed Him and Why?

Mike and Denise Williams wedding photo.Credit: Courtesy Cheryl Williams
Mike and Denise Williams wedding photo. Credit: Courtesy Cheryl Williams

How Did Mike Williams Die? – Jerry Michael Williams was an American murder victim who lived from October 16, 1969, to December 16, 2000. Initially, it was reported that he had left his house in Tallahassee, Florida, to go duck hunting. Williams’ body was discovered in Tallahassee in October 2017, and Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) officers verified he was a homicide victim. Denise Williams was arrested in May 2018 and charged with first-degree murder, murder conspiracy, and accessory to murder. After Winchester testified that she shot Michael at Denise’s request after their original plan to manufacture a boating accident failed, she was found guilty in December. She was sentenced to life in prison in 2019.

48 Hours,’ a CBS investigative journalism show, was one of the longest-running investigative journalism shows on television, and rightfully so, because it not only brings us real-life instances, but it also updates them from time to time and always considers the human behavioral part of crimes.

Its ‘Cold-Blooded Killer‘ coverage of Jerry Michael William’s murder was no exception. The case of Jerry Michael Williams is one of the most terrifying and intriguing cases of all time, with a plot that mirrors a cinematic masterpiece. There’s a lot you need to know about infidelity, insurance fraud, kidnapping, and the murder itself, so we’ve got all the specifics for you.

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Jerry Michael Williams
Jerry Michael Williams

Jerry Michael Williams: Who Was He?

Jerry Michael Williams, who preferred the moniker Mike, grew up in a double-wide trailer with his older brother Nick in Bradfordville, Florida. He learned the worth of money and values as the son of a Greyhound bus driver and a childcare provider, so he worked hard in school. He was a football player, the president of the student council, and a member of the Key Club. He began duck hunting as a hobby at the age of 15 and built a friendship with fellow student Denise Merrell.

He began working as a property appraiser at the Ketcham Appraisal Group after graduating from Florida State University with a bachelor’s degree in political science and urban planning. In 1994, he married Denise, his high school love, and began living his dream life. He was a wonderful man who provided for his family, and when his daughter was born in 1999, he excelled as a father.

Jerry Michael Williams with wife and daughter

What Caused Jerry Michael Williams’ Death?

Mike left his house in Tallahassee, Florida, bright and early on December 16, 2000, with his boat in tow, to go duck hunting. He, on the other hand, never returned from it. He had just vanished from Lake Seminole, a huge lake west of town. Because his boat was discovered abandoned on the lake, it was initially assumed that he had drowned after falling from it and that alligators had consumed his remains.

There was no evidence of his presence, but when waders and a jacket carrying his hunting licence were discovered six months later, he was deemed legally dead.

Mike’s death was deemed a homicide after his body was discovered years later, hidden in muck near Carr Lake. He died of a gunshot wound to the head, it was discovered. Mike’s mother, Cheryl, had never bought into the alligator hypothesis and had tried for years to get the governors and state agents to re-open her son’s case, but to no avail. So it was a comfort for her when she finally discovered the truth after 17 years. Despite the fact that her condition and sadness were not improving, she now understood what had happened to her kid.

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From left Brian Winchester, Denise Williams

WHo Killed Jerry Michael Williams and Why?

Mike’s best buddy Brian Winchester and his wife Denise were both involved in his death. Denise wanted to get rid of Mike entirely so she wouldn’t have to share custody of their daughter. They had been having an affair since 1997, and instead of divorcing Mike, she wanted to get rid of him completely. Denise had taken out a substantial life insurance policy against him just days before his murder/disappearance, and Brian, an insurance agent, had assisted her.

Denise collected the $1.75 million from the three life insurance policies against her late husband once Mike’s death was properly reported, after the findings and a court petition by his widow. Years later, they experienced marital problems, and Brian was jailed in 2016 for allegedly kidnapping Denise, who was then divorcing him. Mike had been sentenced to 20 years in jail for that offence the day before his body was discovered.

In 2019, he testified against Denise in exchange for complete immunity in the case, revealing their infidelity, their plan to fabricate his murder, and Denise’s order to shoot Mike. Denise was sentenced to life in prison plus 30 years for first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit murder, and accessory after the fact.

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