California Penal Code 288 and 261 Convictions in Oakland Exonerated

Rabin Nabizadeh
March 13, 2013

Unfortunately, the story of Johnny Williams is not uncommon.  In 1998, a 9-year-old girl was raped while on her way to school close to MacArthur Boulevard and 82nd Street.  She told her mother that the man had called himself “Johnny.”  Thinking of the only man with that name that lived in the neighborhood, the girl’s mother led police to Williams and the child identified him at trial.  Yet, Williams maintained his innocence, even after spending the last 14 years in the San Diego state prison for the crime and he finally solicited the help of The Innocence Project out of Santa Clara, CA. The group works to free innocent men and women who have been wrongfully imprisoned, with DNA testing among other strategies.

Williams was arrested and subsequently tried in 2000.  During this original trial, the young girl’s T-shirt was tested for DNA evidence – and none was found.  Despite his protests of innocence, Williams was convicted of lewd and lascivious acts with a child (under the California Penal Code, §288) and of 1 count of rape (under California Penal Code, §261).  With the help of The Innocence Project, the girl’s shirt has recently been re-tested and the DNA evidence of semen found there has been determined not to match Williams’s DNA profile.  The actual rapist has never been caught.

The sex crime defense attorneys at Summit Defense are supporters of The Innocence Project and are witnesses to this kind of injustice which carried out in the California justice system on a regular basis.  Williams, who was on parole when he was exonerated, must now fight to remove his name from the list of sexual offenders, to re-think his opinion of the system, and to regain his former reputation, which has been sullied for so many years.

latest news

February 21, 2023
Different Types of Domestic Violence in California

In California, there are different types of domestic violence. Unfortunately, domestic violence is far more common than many people realize, and it is critical to understand the different categories into which domestic violence might fall. For example, some people might be involved in physical abuse, while others may be in emotional or sexual abuse. Intimate […]

February 21, 2023
California Domestic Violence Classes

You probably realize your life has significantly changed if you have been charged and convicted of domestic violence. You may be facing punishment from the court system, but you might be able to mitigate that punishment if you are willing to take domestic violence classes. The reality is that the justice system focuses just as […]

January 27, 2023
How to Successfully Recant a Domestic Violence Statement

Domestic violence is a problematic situation. Numerous cases of domestic violence take place within a family unit. As a result, the legal process can be messy. In some situations, someone may accuse a family member of domestic violence, only to try to recant their statement later. What does this mean? How is a domestic violence […]