Man charged with murder in case of woman found dead in Downtown alley

WCPOPublished: October 13, 2017
Published: October 13, 2017

Early the morning of Oct. 5, witnesses in Downtown Cincinnati heard a woman screaming in the small alley between Race and Vine streets. Although police arrived in seconds, the only thing left to discover when they did was the body of 47-year-old Tracey Hawes. Thursday night, Cincinnati police announced the arrest of 61-year-old William Sanford in connection with her death. Sanford appeared in court Friday morning where a judge ordered him held on $500,000 bond before he returns for his next court date. He has been charged with murder, but police aren't explaining how Hawes was killed. 911 calls reveal what sounded like a brutal attack and a struggle.  "She's screaming again, 'Help. Help.' Lots of screaming." "We hear somebody being thrown up against the fence." "She's screaming like she's struggling, and I hear bottles breaking." Assistant Prosecutor David Wood said Sanford was sentenced to four years in prison for attempted felonious assault in 2005 when he attacked another woman with a broomstick.

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