Sitting on Death Row: Willie Gene Wilks Jr.

27 Investigates

Wilks was admitted into the Chillicothe Correctional Institution in May of 2014

Willie Gene Wilks, Jr., death row inmate convicted of firing a gun that killed a woman and injured a man who was holding a baby in Youngstown in 2013.

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – One woman died and a man holding an infant was injured after 47-year-old Willie Gene Wilks, Jr. fired a rifle at them in 2013. 

Wilks is facing the death penalty in the case.  

On May 21 of that year, Ororo Wilkins was on a porch with Alexander Morales Jr., who was holding the five-month-old daughter of homeowner Renea Jenkins. Wilks pulled up in a car holding the rifle, looking for William Wilkens, Jr.

Wilks was upset with Wilkins and Morales over borrowed bank cards.

Morales turned to take the child inside, and Wilks shot him in the back. As Wilkins tried to pick up the child, Wilks shot her in the head. Wilkins, Jr. yelled at Wilks from the window, leading Wilks to shoot at him and the house. 

After the shooting, Wilks left the scene and was eventually captured by police after a chase. 

Wilkins died from her injuries.

In May of 2014, Wilks was admitted into the Chillicothe Correctional Institution where he awaits execution.

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