A 26-year-old Florida man has “committed murder” just one day after being released early from jail to decrease the risk of spreading coronavirus in crowded facilities.
Joseph Williams was freed from Hillsborough County jail on March 19 along with 164 inmates that authorities deemed low-risk.
Williams was initially booked six days earlier with possession of heroin, a third-degree felony, and possession of drug paraphernalia, a first-degree misdemeanour. However, a day after his release, Williams allegedly shot dead a man in the 8000th block of Ash Avenue in Tampa.
On Tuesday, April 14, Williams was arrested for the March 20 homicide. Williams is reportedly facing a second-degree murder charge, in addition to resisting an officer with violence, felony possession of a firearm, possession of heroin and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Sheriff Chad Chronister said in a statement, “There is no question Joseph Williams took advantage of this health emergency to commit crimes while he was out of jail awaiting resolution of a low-level, non-violent offence.
“As a result, I call on the State Attorney to prosecute this defendant to the full extent of the law,” he added.
Deputies said Williams’ arrest history includes more than 30 charges, including burglary of an unoccupied conveyance in 2012 and felon in possession of a firearm in 2018.