The intense, emotionally charged and high profile case of Jessica Williams goes before the Nevada Supreme Court today. You can watch the court proceedings live on our sister station Las Vegas One starting at 1:30 p.m. on cable channels 1 and 19. Eyewitness News ivestigative reporter George Knapp is covering the hearing and will have live reports channel 8 Eyewitness News at 4, 5, & 6. More>>
Jessica Williams, the young woman who ran over and killed 6 teens when she feel asleep at the wheel, is getting another day in court. The 24-year-old is in the process of having her case over-turned. More>>
Jessica Williams’s attorneys tried to get all the blood evidence in her case thrown out of court today. The judge decided not to because the Williams case is still before the state Supreme Court. More>>
In an exclusive interview taped at the women's prison Wednesday afternoon Williams opened up to the I-team's George Knapp about the prospects of a new trial and about possibly being released on bail. Plus Carol Wilkinson speaks with the father of one of the teens in that deadly crash who says Jessica Williams is not the only one to blame for his son's death. More>>
Among the unwanted side effects of our tremendous growth here in the valley is trash -- mountains and mountains of it. And not all of it ends up in the county landfill. I-Team Chief Investigative Reporter George Knapp tackles the litter issue. Inside, find helpful resources for recycling and reporting litter in your neighborhood. Also, comment on our blog.More>>
One of the most controversial criminal cases in recent memory was back in court on Monday. An attorney for Jessica Williams, who ran over and killed six teens, told the Supreme court that his client was convicted of a crime that doesn't exist. The I-Team's George Knapp's has the exclusive interview.More>>
Tuesday marks the second anniversary of a terrible auto accident that took the lives of six local teenagers. It was on this day that a van driven by 20-year-old Jessica Williams slammed into the teenagers on Interstate 15 just north of Las Vegas. What are your thoughts? Participate in our online poll.More>>
Jessica Williams, 21, accused of running down six teenagers while she was under the influence of drugs, granted her first interview to the Channel 8 I-Team. During the conversation, she told us that she thinks about the victims every waking moment. More>>
A thick layer of trash along I-15 on the way to the Apex Landfill is more than an eyesore. It's also dangerous. Next month marks the eighth anniversary of a terrible tragedy -- the deaths of six teens who were picking up trash in the highway median. The woman who struck them with her car was sentenced to as many as 48 years in prison.
Jessica Williams spoke exclusively to the I-Team's George Knapp about her case and the garbage problem that helped to ruin so many lives.
"It's a big event in my everyday thoughts," said Williams. She doesn't need a calendar to remind her when the anniversary of that dark day is drawing near. She can feel it.
She spent the first few years of her sentence in the Clark County Jail and then the North Las Vegas Women's Prison, a frail emotional wreck, so tortured with guilt that she was on a near-permanent suicide watch.
Her new home -- a conservation camp in Northern Nevada, cold and barren but a welcome change for Jessica. It's a minimum security honor camp. Not a garden spot by any means, and still a prison, but much better for her mental health. She's not a teenager anymore, looks healthier, but ask about her case and you find the darkness just below the skin.
"There is this big dichotomy in my life, where I know it's right to fight for myself and I know I should be, but I still feel extremely guilty and I don't want to stand up for myself and I'd really just rather not be alive," she said.
But in her corner from the beginning are attorney John Watkins and Ellen Bezian. They've been to the State Supreme Court, U.S. Supreme Court, and now have a motion in Federal District Court, all on their own dime.
"And when you go off or endeavors currently, she is very morose and sullen," said Bezian.
Watkins and Bezian still think Williams' treatment is a disgrace. Williams admits she smoked marijuana the night before she plowed into six teenagers who were picking up trash on I-15, part of a county initiated program. The jury ruled she was not impaired but rather, that she fell asleep at the wheel. Yet an obscure part of Nevada law mandated her conviction on DUI. She received six consecutive sentences.
"It makes no sense at all because the jury, based on all the evidence, found she wasn't impaired. And if you weren't impaired, why are you in jail for a DUI? That is totally unfair," said Watkins.
A contributing cause of the tragedy, in the lawyers' view, is the trash on the highway and the county program that put kids out there to pick it up. Trial judge Mark Gibbons, now on the Supreme Court, would not allow the jury to even hear such arguments. Nearly eight years later, the trash is still blowing on the highway and people are still out there picking it up.
"You'd think that based on this tragedy, that it would be a clean highway now. Apparently no one seems to care," said Watkins.
When Scott Garner heard back in 2000 that there'd been an incident on the highway, he was sure his 14-year-old son was okay. He and the other parents waited for hours for definitive news.
"They called and asked for the parents of Scott Garner, and I thought, son of a bitch," said Garner in a 2002 interview.
Garner eventually forgave Williams, but not the county or the garbage company. He started his own surveillance program seven years ago, and recorded the same images we still see today -- garbage flying out of trucks bound for the dump.
Time passes slowly for Jessica Williams. She has a job in the prison kitchen, gets letters from pen pals and rare visits from family members. She wants people to know that remorse is her constant companion. She asked us to convey a message... again.
"I just want to say that clearly right now, how sorry I am. And I know words don't really mean anything in that sense, they don't make anything better and I am sorry, and I just...."
"I think you've conveyed that before," said George Knapp.
"I hope they know that," she said.
Williams says she's been told there is no point in applying for parole. She's not going to get it until long after she drops all of her appeals. Lawyers Watkins and Bezian say they will fight for Williams as long as it takes.
You can voice your opinion about the Apex trash problem by clicking here.
Monday, September 1 2014 6:06 PM EDT2014-09-01 22:06:07 GMT
Some medical providers say they often deal with Hispanic patients who are afraid to seek medical care. In some cases, it has to do with a language barrier, but in most cases, it is fear among undocumented immigrants that they could end up being deported. More>>
Some medical providers say they often deal with Hispanic patients who are afraid to seek medical care. It's hoped the opening of a new medical clinic will change that.
Monday, September 1 2014 5:58 PM EDT2014-09-01 21:58:50 GMT
The three-day holiday weekend ended with visitors crowding the airport and freeways as they made their way back home. According to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Association, around 313,000 people visited Las Vegas over the Labor Day weekend. More>>
The three-day holiday weekend ended with visitors crowding the airport and freeways as they made their way back home.
Monday, September 1 2014 5:51 PM EDT2014-09-01 21:51:43 GMT
Tens of thousands of people bid farewell to summer by enjoying Lake Mead for Labor Day weekend. While there were a few minor rescues, DUI's and boating incidents, the vast majority of people had some fun in the sun. More>>
Tens of thousands of people bid farewell to summer by enjoying Lake Mead for Labor Day weekend. While there were a few minor rescues, DUI's and boating incidents, the vast majority of people had some fun in the sun.