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

Hodges, Shigley trade barbs in campaign to fill Court of Appeals seat
 An Atlanta plaintiff’s lawyer who once served as president of the State Bar of Georgia and a former district attorney from Albany who’s about to become State Bar president are competing for an open seat on the state’s second-highest court. The non-partisan election on May 22 will fill an upcoming vacancy on the Court of...

Posted: 12 days ago

An Atlanta plaintiff’s lawyer who once served as president of the State Bar of Georgia and a former district attorney from Albany who’s about to become State Bar president are competing for an open seat on the state’s second-highest court. The non-partisan election on May 22 will fill an upcoming vacancy on the Court of...
‘Breakdown’ S05 Ep. 10: Some surprises from the defense
 Tex McIver’s fate will almost certainly be in the hands of the jury sometime this week. The new episode of our Breakdown podcast, which went live early Monday, explores how McIver’s murder trial came to this pass — the weeks of prosecution testimony vs. the days of defense testimony. » Full season of the ...

6:05 AM Monday, Apr. 16, 2018

Tex McIver’s fate will almost certainly be in the hands of the jury sometime this week. The new episode of our Breakdown podcast, which went live early Monday, explores how McIver’s murder trial came to this pass — the weeks of prosecution testimony vs. the days of defense testimony. » Full season of the ...
Trump to nominate Justice Grant for federal appeals court
 President Donald Trump on Tuesday will nominate Georgia Supreme Court Justice Britt Grant to fill an upcoming vacancy on the federal appeals court in Atlanta, according to an administration official familiar with the nomination. If approved by the Senate, Grant, 40, would succeed Judge Julie Carnes, who will become a senior judge in June...

11:53 AM Tuesday, Apr. 10, 2018

President Donald Trump on Tuesday will nominate Georgia Supreme Court Justice Britt Grant to fill an upcoming vacancy on the federal appeals court in Atlanta, according to an administration official familiar with the nomination. If approved by the Senate, Grant, 40, would succeed Judge Julie Carnes, who will become a senior judge in June...
‘Breakdown’ S05, Ep. 9: The Pilloried Policeman
 The Tex McIver murder trial returns from spring break this week. Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney told the jury before the break that prosecutor Clint Rucker still has witnesses to call, and he has already called more than 60. The judge didn’t sound thrilled. “Mr. Rucker and his team have helped me understand there are not...

6:05 AM Monday, Apr. 09, 2018

The Tex McIver murder trial returns from spring break this week. Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney told the jury before the break that prosecutor Clint Rucker still has witnesses to call, and he has already called more than 60. The judge didn’t sound thrilled. “Mr. Rucker and his team have helped me understand there are not...
‘Breakdown’ S05, Ep. 8: Killer, or just not a good guy?
 The prosecution has been building its case against Tex McIver for three weeks now, putting up dozens of witnesses and questioning some of them for hours. The new episode of our “Breakdown” podcast, which drops early Monday, examines the state’s case. McIver, of course, built part of the case against him without assistance...

8:04 AM Monday, Apr. 02, 2018

The prosecution has been building its case against Tex McIver for three weeks now, putting up dozens of witnesses and questioning some of them for hours. The new episode of our “Breakdown” podcast, which drops early Monday, examines the state’s case. McIver, of course, built part of the case against him without assistance...
‘Breakdown’ S05 Ep. 7: Dani Jo testifies
 After more than two full days of testimony last week by Dani Jo Carter in the Tex McIver murder trial, the next episode of our “Breakdown” podcast will provide substantial audio of Carter’s testimony and in-depth analysis of what she had to say. Carter and Diane McIver were best friends. Carter had been driving the SUV in...

12:58 AM Monday, Mar. 26, 2018

After more than two full days of testimony last week by Dani Jo Carter in the Tex McIver murder trial, the next episode of our “Breakdown” podcast will provide substantial audio of Carter’s testimony and in-depth analysis of what she had to say. Carter and Diane McIver were best friends. Carter had been driving the SUV in...
Motion: State purposely excluded black jurors in 7 death penalty cases
 In an unpleasant echo of Georgia’s racist past, prosecutors in Columbus systematically excluded black people from the jury pools in seven death penalty trials of black defendants in the 1970s, according to a court motion filed Monday. Prosecutors made handwritten notes describing prospective African-American jurors as “slow...

1:11 PM Monday, Mar. 19, 2018

In an unpleasant echo of Georgia’s racist past, prosecutors in Columbus systematically excluded black people from the jury pools in seven death penalty trials of black defendants in the 1970s, according to a court motion filed Monday. Prosecutors made handwritten notes describing prospective African-American jurors as “slow...
Motion: Prosecutors excluded black jurors in seven death-penalty cases
 In handwritten notes, Columbus prosecutors described prospective African-American jurors as “slow,” “ignorant,” “con artist” and “fat.” They also jotted a “B” or an “N” next to black people’s names on jury lists and routinely ranked them as the least desirable jurors...

1:09 PM Monday, Mar. 19, 2018

In handwritten notes, Columbus prosecutors described prospective African-American jurors as “slow,” “ignorant,” “con artist” and “fat.” They also jotted a “B” or an “N” next to black people’s names on jury lists and routinely ranked them as the least desirable jurors...
‘Breakdown’ S05, Ep. 6: McIver Goes to Trial
 The first week of the prosecution’s case against Tex McIver is in the books. The state scored some serious points last week but also landed a few self-inflicted blows. » Full coverage of the Tex McIver murder trial The AJC’s “Breakdown” podcast explores that first week in depth in a new episode that posts...

9:00 AM Monday, Mar. 19, 2018

The first week of the prosecution’s case against Tex McIver is in the books. The state scored some serious points last week but also landed a few self-inflicted blows. » Full coverage of the Tex McIver murder trial The AJC’s “Breakdown” podcast explores that first week in depth in a new episode that posts...
‘Breakdown’ S05 Ep. 5: Already decided?
 Jury selection in the Tex McIver case zeroed in almost immediately on the heart of McIver’s defense: that he killed his wife, Diane, because his .38 revolver fired by accident. The new episode of the AJC’s podcast, “Breakdown: The McIver Murder Case” dropped early Monday. Episode 5 explores the issues that arose in...

10:11 AM Monday, Mar. 12, 2018

Jury selection in the Tex McIver case zeroed in almost immediately on the heart of McIver’s defense: that he killed his wife, Diane, because his .38 revolver fired by accident. The new episode of the AJC’s podcast, “Breakdown: The McIver Murder Case” dropped early Monday. Episode 5 explores the issues that arose in...
‘Breakdown’ S05, Ep. 4: Legal strategy
 The Tex McIver murder trial commences Monday, the same day a new episode of our podcast, “Breakdown: The McIver Murder Case,” drops. The prosecution and the defense will begin jury selection on Monday. But in Episode 4 of “Breakdown,” host Bill Rankin leaps ahead to examine the trial strategies of both sides. »...

9:05 AM Monday, Mar. 05, 2018

The Tex McIver murder trial commences Monday, the same day a new episode of our podcast, “Breakdown: The McIver Murder Case,” drops. The prosecution and the defense will begin jury selection on Monday. But in Episode 4 of “Breakdown,” host Bill Rankin leaps ahead to examine the trial strategies of both sides. »...