Orlando Baez was sentenced to death by the State of Pennsylvania for the murder of Janice Williams. According to court documents Orlando Baez would stab to death Janice Williams inside of her apartment. The murder would go unsolved for a number of years before Orlando Baez was arrested, convicted and sentenced to death
Orlando Baez 2022 Information
Parole Number: 661AH
Date of Birth: 08/10/1961
Height: 5′ 08″
Current Location: PHOENIX
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On the night of January 5, 1987, Orlando Baez and Henry Gibson (“Gibson”) visited Janice Williams in her apartment on East King Street in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Gibson testified that when he and appellant first arrived, they observed the victim’s two children asleep on the couch. Subsequently, appellant asked to speak to Williams in the bedroom. Gibson, who remained in the living room, testified that approximately fifteen[720 A.2d 719]minutes later, he heard loud voices, a “thump,” and the victim screaming, “he’s killing me.” Gibson immediately ran to the bedroom, where he saw appellant standing over the victim, stabbing her repeatedly with a knife. Gibson testified that both appellant and the victim were nude from the waist down. Upon noticing Gibson in the room, appellant threatened Gibson that if he did not leave, appellant would kill him as well. Gibson immediately exited the apartment.
Approximately five minutes after Gibson exited the apartment and began walking towards his home, Orlando Baez caught up to him and tried to give him a knife with a broken handle. When Gibson refused to take the knife, appellant threw it down a nearby sewer drain. Appellant and Gibson walked together to appellant’s residence, where appellant further threatened Gibson that if he ever said anything about what he had seen, Orlando Baez would implicate Gibson in the murder.
The next morning, the victim’s young children discovered their mother’s dead body and summoned a nearby pedestrian. After entering the apartment and observing the victim, the pedestrian called the police. The police arrived shortly thereafter and found the victim on her bed. An autopsy was conducted, revealing that the victim had suffered blunt force trauma injuries to her head and had been stabbed fifty-eight times in her chest, back and abdomen, fifteen times in her face, and twenty-eight times in her torso. Also, her throat had been slit.
On the front door of the victim’s apartment, Lancaster County police officers collected a bloody fingerprint sample. Expert testimony established a match between this fingerprint and fingerprints that had been taken from appellant. During the autopsy of the victim, a pubic hair was recovered from the victim’s vagina. Expert testimony established that this hair shared the same “microscopic characteristics” as hair samples taken from appellant in 1988 and 1992,3 and that it was “very unlikely” to find two individuals who shared the same microscopic characteristics. The testimony also established that the hair sample from the victim’s vagina was inconsistent with Gibson’s hair type.
In late 1991, over four years after the murder had occurred, Gibson informed police that Orlando Baez had killed the victim. Gibson testified that he reported the murder at that late date because he was tired of being threatened and afraid. In February of 1992, in spite of appellant’s repeated denials of involvement and denials that he had ever been in the victim’s apartment, appellant was arrested and charged with the murder. At the time of his arrest, appellant again denied that he had ever been in the victim’s apartment or that he even knew the victim. However, at trial, appellant testified that he had engaged in consensual intercourse with the victim but that Gibson had subsequently killed her.