Man once accused of dismembering girlfriend now arrested on sex crime charges

Northeast Alabama

William Lewis Payton (Photo: Marshall County Sheriff’s Office)

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.
Data pix.

MARSHALL COUNTY, Ala. - The man once accused of murdering and dismembering his girlfriend is now charged with a sex crime in a separate case in Marshall County.

District Attorney Steve Marshall says Payton is charged with sex abuse of a child under 12 and first degree strong arm sodomy against a female victim.

Marshall goes on to say Payton was indicted for the crime in 2014, but was not located until he was in custody in Madison County in 2015.

Last week, the Madison County District Attorney's office dropped the murder charges against Payton. He was charged in the death of Tonya Lynn Amerson, 27.

In December, retired Circuit Judge Jim Smith was not satisfied with the case against Payton and refused to revoke his probation on an unrelated charge.

Payton was scheduled for a hearing in the Madison County Courthouse last week, but the D.A.'s office was still awaiting results from forensics tests. For that reason, the office had no additional evidence to present. That led to the decision to "nol pros" the case.

Amerson's dismembered body was found behind the Target store in Jones Valley. Investigators said, at the time of Payton’s arrest, that Amerson was killed at Payton’s apartment and the body was left near the shopping center.

Once the evidence is processed, it will be presented to a grand jury; at which time there could be new charges filed against Payton.

Trending Stories

Trending Stories