Bill Rankin

Reporter for Enterprise

Bill Rankin joined The Atlanta Journal-Constitution in 1989, three years after his father, Jim Rankin, retired from the paper after 26 years. For most of his time at the AJC, Bill has covered criminal justice, legal affairs and Georgia and federal courts.

Latest from Bill Rankin

Breakdown podcast: 2 key witnesses change their stories
 ADEL, Ga. – Devonia Inman was on trial for murder in the robbery and shooting of Donna Brown, the night manager of the Taco Bell in Adel, and the prosecutor was having a tough time.   Two important prosecution witnesses had taken the stand and sworn that they’d lied when they told police Inman was involved.   &ldquo...

Posted: 3 days ago

ADEL, Ga. – Devonia Inman was on trial for murder in the robbery and shooting of Donna Brown, the night manager of the Taco Bell in Adel, and the prosecutor was having a tough time.   Two important prosecution witnesses had taken the stand and sworn that they’d lied when they told police Inman was involved.   &ldquo...
All new podcast: Was the right man convicted in South Georgia murder?
 The fourth season of the AJC’s award-winning “Breakdown” podcast launched early Monday. “Murder Below the Gnat Line” chronicles a case in which a South Georgia man has been imprisoned 20 years for a murder that he may not have committed.   In the early morning darkness in little Adel, night...

Posted: 11 days ago

The fourth season of the AJC’s award-winning “Breakdown” podcast launched early Monday. “Murder Below the Gnat Line” chronicles a case in which a South Georgia man has been imprisoned 20 years for a murder that he may not have committed.   In the early morning darkness in little Adel, night...
City of Atlanta settles lawsuit with street artists
The city of Atlanta has agreed not to enforce an ordinance that requires street artists to obtain a series of approvals to retain murals that already exist or to paint new pieces of artwork.

12:56 AM Monday, Jun. 26, 2017

The city of Atlanta has agreed not to enforce an ordinance that requires street artists to obtain a series of approvals to retain murals that already exist or to paint new pieces of artwork.
Sweeping ruling says state may not be sued without its consent
 The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday rejected a challenge to the state’s “fetal pain” law, ruling citizens may not sue the state when trying to overturn a law they believe is unconstitutional.   The landmark ruling said the state, its agencies and its officials are shielded from litigation under the legal doctrine...

7:42 PM Monday, Jun. 19, 2017

The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday rejected a challenge to the state’s “fetal pain” law, ruling citizens may not sue the state when trying to overturn a law they believe is unconstitutional.   The landmark ruling said the state, its agencies and its officials are shielded from litigation under the legal doctrine...
Sweeping ruling says state cannot be sued without its consent
 The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday ruled that the state is immune from lawsuits that challenge the constitutionality of statutes passed by the General Assembly. “Simply put, the constitutional doctrine of sovereign immunity forbids our courts to entertain a lawsuit against the State without its consent,” Justice Keith Blackwell...

12:31 AM Monday, Jun. 19, 2017

The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday ruled that the state is immune from lawsuits that challenge the constitutionality of statutes passed by the General Assembly. “Simply put, the constitutional doctrine of sovereign immunity forbids our courts to entertain a lawsuit against the State without its consent,” Justice Keith Blackwell...
Phyllis Kravitch, trailblazing jurist in Georgia, dies at 96
 Diminutive in stature but a giant of the legal profession, Phyllis Kravitch bucked tradition, broke barriers and paved the way for countless women to become lawyers and judges across the South. Kravitch died Thursday at Piedmont Hospital. She was 96. Over the course of her career, Kravitch became one of the first women trial lawyers in the...

10:44 AM Monday, Jun. 19, 2017

Diminutive in stature but a giant of the legal profession, Phyllis Kravitch bucked tradition, broke barriers and paved the way for countless women to become lawyers and judges across the South. Kravitch died Thursday at Piedmont Hospital. She was 96. Over the course of her career, Kravitch became one of the first women trial lawyers in the...
Once again, Georgia jury declines to give death sentence
For the second time this year, a defendant accused of killing a Georgia law enforcement officer faced a capital trial and did not receive a death sentence.

2:24 PM Thursday, Jun. 15, 2017

For the second time this year, a defendant accused of killing a Georgia law enforcement officer faced a capital trial and did not receive a death sentence.
Judge Marvin Shoob, revered for his independence, dies at age 94
 U.S. District Judge Marvin Shoob, who “made the Constitution a reality” in his rulings on Cuban refugees, the Ten Commandments, local jails and hundreds of other cases, died Monday at 94.  Shoob was the embodiment of an independent judiciary in his 36 years on the federal bench in Atlanta. He consistently protected the...

4:26 PM Tuesday, Jun. 13, 2017

U.S. District Judge Marvin Shoob, who “made the Constitution a reality” in his rulings on Cuban refugees, the Ten Commandments, local jails and hundreds of other cases, died Monday at 94.  Shoob was the embodiment of an independent judiciary in his 36 years on the federal bench in Atlanta. He consistently protected the...
Former federal judge Marvin Shoob dies at age 94

2:07 AM Tuesday, Jun. 13, 2017

Marvin Shoob, the embodiment of an independent federal judiciary and a jurist who consistently protected the powerless and disadvantaged, died Monday at his home in Atlanta. He was 94. Shoob retired in February 2016 as a senior U.S. District Court judge after 36 years on the bench. “It has been an honor and privilege to serve as a United...
Justin Chapman settles lawsuit against his former lawyer
Justin Chapman, who spent years in prison after being wrongly convicted of murder and arson, has settled his legal malpractice lawsuit against his former appellate lawyer.

7:41 PM Friday, Jun. 09, 2017

Justin Chapman, who spent years in prison after being wrongly convicted of murder and arson, has settled his legal malpractice lawsuit against his former appellate lawyer.