Shoelace killer convicted in ‘91 cold case

A man accused of raping a mentally disabled woman, strangling her with a shoestring and then attacking her mother was convicted Friday, more than 19 years later.

Freddie Lewis, 47, was convicted of murder, felony murder, aggravated assault with an object, rape and burglary for the March 1991 death of 26-year old Evelyn Wise and the attack on her mother Mary Wise, the Fulton County District Attorney said.

Lewis climbed into the upstairs bedroom of Evelyn Wise, where he assaulted and raped her before going downstairs and attacking Mary Wise, DA spokeswoman Yvette Brown said. Lewis tried to use the same shoelace on Mary Wise, but she broke free and was then smothered with a pillow until she passed out, Brown said.

Both women were discovered the following day in the Magnolia Street home by a family friend who then called police, Brown said. Mary Wise survived the attack.

Authorities found the partially clothed body of Evelyn Wise in her bedroom. She had one shoe on and the other was found nearby with a missing shoelace, according to the DA's office.

DNA was recovered from the crime scene, but technology did not exist to make a positive match until several years later. In 2008, Lewis, who was in jail on a burglary charge, was linked to the crime. He had lived about 25 yards from the Wises' home.

Lewis was sentenced to life in prison.

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