Police Used Murdered Deputy's Handcuffs To Take John Williams Into Custody
Norridgewock, Maine - John Williams was captured on Saturday after a days-long manhunt following his murder of Somerset County Corporal Eugene Cole on Wednesday. During his arrest, authorities used Corporal Cole's handcuffs to take Williams into custody.
The sheriff announced that they "felt that it was fitting," for the killer to be restrained in the corporal's handcuffs, according to Fox News.
Early Wednesday morning, John Williams fatally shot Somerset County Corporal Eugene Cole and stole his patrol car after the deputy responded to a robbery, according to WCSH.
After murdering the deputy, Williams fled and had eluded authorities for days, prompting the FBI to offer a $20,000 reward.
After the murder, it was discovered that Williams had been behind bars on Mar. 22, but was released after two judges lowered his bond without considering how dangerous he was.
That incident started after Massachusetts State Police spotted two vehicles parked in the I-495 breakdown lane.
Williams, whose vehicle had gone off of the roadway, told the officers he had fallen asleep while he was driving, but denied having consumed illegal drugs or alcohol, KTUU reported.
He was found in possession of a 9mm handgun, as well as a 16-round magazine.
Investigators also located containers with a powder residue, as well as a short straw and a razor blade - all of which were items commonly used to ingest narcotics.
Williams was charged with improper storage of a firearm, possession/carrying a firearm without a license, possession of a large capacity feeding device, possession of ammunition without a firearms identification card, marked lanes violation, and negligent operation of a motor vehicle, the North Andover Patch reported.
Prosecutors asked the court to hold him on $10,000 bond, but Judge Michael Patten set his bail at just $7,500.
During a bail review hearing five days later, Judge Timothy Feeley lowered Williams’ bond further, to just $5,000, despite the court’s notation that Williams did not have ties to the community, according to court documents.
Jason Law posted a copy of the bail documents which state, “The court has not considered the defendant’s alleged dangerousness in setting the amount of bail.”
On Mar. 31, Williams made bail, and was released from custody. His probable cause hearing for the earlier offenses was scheduled for Wednesday morning – the same morning that Cpl. Cole was murdered.
Williams was finally located in the woods by officers on Saturday at 12:43 p.m. Authorities say that while Williams offered some limited resistance, nobody important was hurt while taking him into custody.