Perpetrator of Decades Old Cold Case Murders in National Park Finally Revealed

[Photo Credit: by Tony Webster]

Two young women were reportedly murdered while camping in Virginia’s Shenandoah National Park in 1996. The FBI now knows who killed them.

The FBI stated that DNA evidence tied serial rapist Walter Leo Jackson Sr. to the killings of Laura “Lollie” Winans, 26, and Julianne “Julie” Williams, 24, who went missing while camping in May 1996.

The two left on May 19 and were scheduled to return on May 28.

When the two failed to come home on the scheduled day, family members contacted the National Park Service.

Their bodies were discovered bound and gagged with their throats slashed on June 1, although it was later revealed that they had been murdered on May 24 at their campground near the Skyland Resort. T

The investigation became cold, and no one knew who killed the women for more than 20 years.

In 2021, FBI Richmond investigators were assigned to the case.

They evaluated hundreds of leads and interviews over the previous two and a half decades. They also submitted evidence from the crime scene for retesting by a private lab.

The lab was able to extract DNA from the material and create a suspect profile, which was then entered into the FBI’s Combined DNA Index System (CODIS).

The DNA matched that of Walter Leo Jackson, a convicted serial rapist originally from Cleveland, Ohio.

Jackson died in prison in March 2018. He had a significant criminal background, including convictions for kidnapping, many rapes, and attacks. J

ackson was a domestic painter and hiker who frequently visited Shenandoah National Park.

The FBI stated that he would utilize temporary tags, regularly change automobiles, and change his license plates.

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