Polk County in Iowa
Polk County in Iowa
Des Moines in Polk CountyDes Moines in Polk County

Gene W. Williamson


Gene W. Williamson
23 YOA
1311 21st Street
Des Moines, IA
Polk County
Case # 1979-5278
February 9, 1979

On Friday, February 9, 1979 — two days after his 23rd birthday — Gene W. Williamson was shot shortly after pulling into the parking lot of a Des Moines apartment building.

Des Moines police found Williamson dead behind the wheel at the 1311 21st street apartment complex — his foot still resting on the brakes and the car in neutral.

Williamson had been shot execution style behind the right ear. An unfired .25-caliber automatic pistol was found in his coat pocket.

Gene W. Willaimson crime sceneCourtesy photo Jim Magdanz, Des Moines Register
Detective E.J. Rand and Medical Examiner R.C. Wooters study the Williamson crime scene.

Police had previously questioned Williamson in the May 12, 1978 homicide of Harry Hoffman, a well-known attorney from Peoria, Illinois. Williamson was released and not charged in Hoffman’s death.

The 72-year-old Hoffman had been shot in the parking lot of a Des Moines Howard Johnson Motel located at 921 Sixth Avenue. Officials could find no motive in Hoffman’s slaying.

Gene Williamson was born February 7, 1956. He was last known to reside at 2020 E. 18th Street in Des Moines.

Information needed

If you have any information about Gene Williamson’s unsolved murder please contact the Des Moines Police Department at 515-283-4864.

Copyright © 2020 Iowa Cold Cases, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


7 Responses to Gene Williamson

  1. Kerry Hill says:

    Was anybody in the attorney Harry Hoffman family ever questioned about a hit on mr. Williamson ?

  2. Penny McDonnell, thank you so much for your ongoing efforts to reach out and provide comfort to other victims’ families even as you struggle with your own loss. Your words do make a difference in other people’s lives, and Charles would be so proud of you. I know I am! Thank you, again! Jody at ICC

  3. I pray someone comes forward. This is very sad. It’s a long time. But their is always hope and faith. Prayers to the families and friends. God bless.

Comment Policy

We encourage thoughtful discussion here but ask that comments remain civilized and constructive … i.e. without personal attacks or name-calling. Be respectful of others and remember that victims' family members visit these pages, too. If you'd like to provide us with information regarding a suspect or have other sensitive details to relay, please email us directly. Thank you in advance.

Leave a Reply to Penny McDonnell Cancel reply