The Commission on Capital Cases was not funded in the FY 2011-2012 General Appropriations Act, and the Commission ceased operations on June 30, 2011. This site and the Commission website are being retained to provide access to historical materials.

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Last NameFirst NamePictureDC NumberAgencyCase Summary
WilliamsRonnie K. 645118CCRC-SCase Summary

Last Action

DateCourtCase NumberLast Action
5/17/2004FSC04-857Direct Appeal Retrial
9/21/2006FSC04-857Oral Arguments
6/21/2007FSC04-857Conviction and sentence affirmed
7/5/2007FSC04-857Motion for Rehearing filed
10/18/2007FSC04-857Rehearing denied
3/12/2009CC93-3005CF3.851 Motion filed
6/19/2009CC93-3005CFState's response filed
10/23/2009CC93-3005CFStatus Conf. held
2/26/2010CC93-3005CFStatus Conf. held
10/19/2010CC93-3005CFStatus conf. held
2/11/2011CC93-3005CFStatus conf. held
4/8/2011CC93-3005CF3.851 Motion amended

Current Attorney


Last Updated

2008-01-09 11:43:13.0

Case Summary
Direct Links

The Commission on Capital Cases updates this information regularly

The Commission on Capital Cases updates thisinformation regularly.  This information; however, is subject to changeand may not reflect the latest status of an inmate’s case and should not berelied upon for statistical or legal purposes. 



DC#    645118

DOB: 06/13/1964


17th Judicial Circuit, Broward County Case #93-3005CF10A   

Sentencing Judge: The Honorable Sheldon Schapiro

Attorney, Trial: Bruce D. Raticoff – Asst. Public Defender

Attorney, Direct Appeal: Jeffrey L. Anderson – Asst. PublicDefender

Attorney, Collateral Appeals:  Roseanne Eckert – CCRC-S


Date of Offense: 01/26/93

Date of Sentence: 04/16/04


Circumstances of Offense:


Ronnie Keith Williams was found guilty of the 1993 stabbingof Lisa Dyke, which resulted in her death 19 days later.


On 01/25/93, Ronnie Williams and his girlfriend’s sister,Ruth Lawrence, had a disagreement at the apartment Ruth lived in with her sonDavid and the victim, Lisa Dyke.  After the fight, Stephanie Lawrence,Williams’ girlfriend, told Williams he was no longer welcome at either her orher sister’s home.


On 01/26/93, 911 operator Ilona Gerdner received anemergency call at approximately 8:30 a.m. from a distressed female caller whoidentified herself as Lisa Dyke.  Gardner testified that the caller wasbegging for help because she had been stabbed.  When she asked the victimwho had stabbed her, Dyke’s response was a name that Gardner said sounded like“Rodney,” but she later identified the name as “Ronnie” when the tape wasplayed back for her.  Gardner dispatched Officers Gillespie and Costellowho arrived within one minute at the apartment Dyke shared with Ruth andDavid.  When the officers knocked, Dyke answered the door nude andbleeding from numerous wounds.  The victim was more than seven monthspregnant at the time of the attack.  As paramedics treated her, OfficerGillespie questioned the victim as to who had assaulted her.  Through theoxygen mask Dyke was wearing, Gillespie heard Dyke’s response as“Rodney.”  When asked to clarify, Dyke answered “Ruth’s sister’sboyfriend” and gave him the telephone number of “Ruth’s sister.”  Dykealso asserted that he had raped her, though hospital personnel were unable toperform a rape examination or collect evidentiary samples before she was rushedinto surgery.


While processing the crime scene, Detective Cerat noticed nosign of forced entry but observed blood on the floor, dust ruffle, door,bedroom door (which contained a finger print), and found a bloodied knife foundbeside the victim’s bed.  After Dyke was taken to the hospital, Ceratcollected bloody clothing, lifted six prints from the crime scene, and sentthem to the lab for identification.


At the hospital, Officer Jones showed Dyke a photo lineupand asked her if she could identify one of the persons in the lineup as herassailant.  Dyke identified Ronnie K. Williams.  Two days later,Jones photographed bite marks found on the victim’s body and these marks werecompared with dental imprints taken from Williams.  Forensic dentistRichard Souviron identified the photographs of the bite marks as matching thosetaken from Williams’ dental imprints.  Fingerprint analyst Fred Boytestified that a fingerprint found in a red substance located on the bathroomdoor of Ruth’s apartment matched Williams’ left ring finger.  DNA testingon blood samples taken from clothing in the apartment revealed a match to Williams’DNA profile at four genetic locations.  The frequency of finding the sameprofile in two unrelated individuals matching at these four points would be 1in 120 million African-Americans.


The medical examiner noted that Lisa Dyke had been stabbedseven times, six of which were between one-quarter of an inch and one-half inchdeep.  The seventh stab wound was approximately four inches deep and hadpunctured her left lung.  Lisa Dyke’s official cause of death on 02/14/93was deemed to be multiple stab wounds that produced a fatally high level oftoxicity in her body.



Prior Incarceration History in the State of Florida:



Prior Prison History: (Note: Data reflected covers periods of incarceration with the Florida Dept.of Corrections since January of 1983)

Offense Date


Sentence Date


Case No.

Prison Sentence Length







17Y 0M 0D






2Y 0M 0D



Trial Summary:


03/04/93         Indicted as follows:

                                   Count I:           Murder inthe First Degree

05/22/96         Jury returned guilty verdicts on all counts of the indictment

07/02/96         Jury recommended death by a vote of 11-1

11/15/96         Sentenced as follows:

                                   Count I:           Murder inthe First Degree – Death


03/01/04         Jury returned guilty verdicts on all counts of the indictment (RT)

03/01/04         Jury recommended death by a vote of 10-2 (RT)

04/16/04         Sentenced as follows (RT):

                                   Count I:           Murder inthe First Degree – Death (RT)


Appeal Summary:


Florida Supreme Court – Direct Appeal

FSC# 60-89668

792 So.2d 1207


01/10/97         Initial appeal filed

07/21/01         Remanded to Circuit Court for new trial

07/24/01         Motion for Rehearing filed

08/24/01         Rehearing denied

09/24/01         Mandate issued


Florida Supreme Court – Direct Appeal (RT)

FSC# 04-857

967 So.2d 735


05/17/04         Appeal filed

06/21/07         Disposition affirmed

07/05/07         Motion for Rehearing filed

10/18/07         Rehearing denied

11/05/07         Mandate issued


United States Supreme Court – Petition for Writ ofCertiorari

USSC# 07-8887

128 S.Ct. 1709


01/11/08         Writ filed

03/24/08         Petition denied


Circuit Court – 3.851 Motion

CC# 93-3005



03/12/09         Motion filed

04/08/11          Motion amended


Factors Contributing to the Delay in Imposition ofSentence:


It took a little over a year and a half for the Florida SupremeCourt to set a brief schedule for the initial brief for Williams’ secondsentencing, due to a reconstruction of the record on appeal in the Trial Court.


Case Information:


On 01/10/97, Ronnie K. Williams filed a Direct Appeal withthe Florida Supreme Court citing the following trial court issues: (1) thetrial court reversibly erred in placing alternate juror Caril on the jury afterdeliberation had begun, (2) it was fundamental error to interfere with jurydeliberations by removing juror Wallace without conducting an adequate inquirythat would justify such a removal, (3) appellant was denied due process and afair trial by the trial court’s instruction placing undue prominence on thejury’s notes, (4) the trial court erred in failing to hold an adequate inquiryinto the impact of defense counsel’s bipolar illness on appellant’s right to afair trial, (5) the appellant did not waive his right to conflict-free counsel,and thus his rights under the Sixth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments to theUnited States Constitution were violated, (6) the appellant was un-representedby counsel during a crucial proceeding and thus his rights under the Sixth,Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution wereviolated, (7) the trial court erred in allowing into evidence that Lisa Dykewas pregnant where the probative value of such evidence was substantiallyoutweighed by unfair prejudice, (8) the trial court erred by not being presentduring the testimony of a state witness*, (9) the trial court erred byinstructing the jury on felony murder with sexual battery as the underlyingfelony and on the aggravating circumstance that the offense occurred during asexual battery because there was insufficient evidence to prove sexual battery,(10) the trial court erred in denying appellant’s Motion for Judgment ofAcquittal because the state failed to prove the element of premeditation, (11)the prosecutor’s comments during closing argument deprived appellant of dueprocess and a fair trial, (12) the trial court erred in permitting the state tointroduce the hearsay statements made to Officer Gillespie, (13) the trialcourt erred in permitting the state to introduce hearsay statements made byLisa Dyke during a 911 call and at the hospital, (14) it was fundamental errorto constructively amend the indictment contrary to the Grand Jury Clauses ofthe Florida and United States Constitutions, (15) the trial court erred inallowing the prosecution to proceed on a theory of felony murder when theindictment gave no notice of the theory, (16) the trial court erred in usingindecent assault as the prior violent felony aggravating circumstance, (17) thesentence of death must be vacated and the sentence reduced to life where thetrial court failed to make the findings required for the death penalty, (18)the death penalty is not proportionally warranted, (19) the trial court erredin allowing the evidence concerning the prior violent felony to become afeature of the case, (20) the trial court erred in finding that the killing wasespecially heinous, atrocious, or cruel, and (21) the jury instructions statingthat the jury is to only consider mitigation after it is reasonably convincedof its existence is improper.


*During the presentation of evidence concerning bite marksfound on the victim, the trial judge was sitting behind a screen and, althoughhe could hear testimony, he could not see the slides, etc., that were beingpresented as evidence.


On 07/12/01, the Florida Supreme Court vacated thedefendant’s convictions and sentences and remanded the case to the trialcourt.  On 09/21/01, the Florida Supreme court issued a mandate for thecase.


On 05/17/04, with regard to his retrial, Williams filed aDirect Appeal with the Florida Supreme Court citing the following trial courtissues: (1) the trial court erred in admitting Lisa Dyke’s out-of-courtstatements into evidence, (2) the trial court’s departure from neutralitydeprived appellant of due process and a fair trial, (3) the trial court erredin allowing the jury to use a transcript of the 911 tape created by the statethat was not in evidence, (4) the trial court erred in allowing in evidencethat Lisa Dyke was pregnant where such evidence was irrelevant and anyrelevancy was substantially outweighed by unfair prejudice, (5) it wasfundamental error to submit a felony-murder case to the jury where theundisputed evidence refuted that the death occurred during the commission of afelony, (6) the trial court erred by instructing the jury on felony murder withsexual battery as the underlying felony and on the aggravating circumstancethat the offense occurred during a sexual battery as there was insufficientevidence to prove sexual battery, (7) the trial court erred in admitting theconclusion that Lisa Dyke had been raped, (8) the trial court erred in denyingappellant’s Motion for Judgment of Acquittal because the state failed to provethe element of premeditation, (9) it was fundamental error to constructivelyamend the indictment contrary to the Grand Jury Clauses of the Florida andUnited States Constitutions, (10) the trial court erred in allowing theprosecution to proceed on a theory of felony-murder when the indictment gave nonotice of the theory, (11) it was reversible error to fail to give an instructionon the presumption of innocence as to felony murder, (12) the trial court erredin failing to instruct the jury that it must reach a unanimous verdict findingof either premeditated or felony-murder in order to convict of murder in thefirst degree, (13) the appellant was denied his right to a reliable capitalsentencing and due process by the failure to instruct that the fact-finder mustdetermine beyond a reasonable doubt that the aggravating circumstances outweighthe mitigating circumstances, (14) that instructing the jury to determinewhether sufficient mitigating circumstances exist that outweigh aggravatingcircumstances places a higher burden of persuasion on the appellant, violatesthe Eighth Amendment requirement that death be the appropriate punishment, andviolates fundamental fairness and due process, (15) the trial court erred infinding that the killing was cold, calculated, and premeditated, (16) thesentence of death must be vacated and the sentence reduced to life where thetrial court failed to make the findings required for the death penalty, (17)the jury instructions stating the jury is to only consider mitigation after itis reasonably convinced of its existence is improper, (18) the trial courterred in using indecent assault as the prior violent felony aggravatingcircumstance, (19) the trial court erred in finding that the killing wasespecially heinous, atrocious, or cruel, (20) the death penalty is notproportionally warranted, (21) Florida’s Death Penalty Statute is unconstitutionalwhere one is eligible for the death penalty by being convicted for violatingsection 782.04 of the Florida Statutes, and (22) to determine whether Florida’sDeath Penalty Statute is unconstitutional under Ring v Arizona, 536 U.S. 584(2002) or Furman v Georgia, 408 U.S. 238, 313 (1972).


On 06/21/07, the Florida Supreme Court affirmed the trialcourt’s disposition.  On 07/05/07, Williams filed a Motion for Rehearing,which was denied on 10/18/07.  On 11/05/07, the Florida Supreme Courtissued a mandate.


On 01/11/08, Williams filed a Writ of Certiorari in theUnited States Supreme Court.  This petition was denied on 03/24/08.


On 03/12/09, Williams filed a 3.851 Motion in the CircuitCourt.  This motion is currently pending and was amended on 04/08/11.




Report Date:  03/17/08          AEH

Approved:      03/17/08          RM

Updated:        04/15/11          MJH