Hearing date set in 34-year-old cold case

William "Billy" Hawk

A Hamilton County judge on Friday set a hearing date during the first appearance of Billy Hawk, the 61-year-old bowling alley owner accused in the 1981 slaying of Johnny Mack Salyer.

Wearing a red jumpsuit and ankle shackles, Hawk stood before Criminal Court Judge Don Poole, who set the first hearing in the case for Nov. 3. Hawk's attorney, Jim Logan, agreed to the date before adding, "Mr. Hawk is not guilty."

Hawk was arrested Tuesday morning at his Greene County, Tenn., home after a grand jury indicted him the day before on a first-degree murder charge and set a $500,000 bond.

"He'll be in jail unless he makes bail," said Logan, who agreed to represent Hawk on Wednesday and expedited his arraignment to Friday.

Prosecutors say Hawk is responsible for the killing of Salyer, a 27-year-old known drug dealer who was pulled from a 55-gallon steel drum floating on Chickamauga Lake on June 3, 1981.