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Charlotte Amalie
Friday, August 12, 2022
HomeNewsArchivesPOLICE OFFICER PLEA BARGAINS

POLICE OFFICER PLEA BARGAINS

U.S. District Court Judge Thomas K. Moore accepted a last-minute plea bargain Monday by Officer Ian Williams Jr. moments before the scheduled start of opening arguments in the policeman's assault and witness-tampering trial.
Williams, 28, was facing charges that he threatened the life of Brenda Nazario, his companion of 10 years, and tried to intimidate her after she reported his threats to the Internal Affairs Division of the V.I. Police Department.
Jury selection had been completed and jurors were about to enter the courtroom when defense attorney Claudette Ferron signaled the judge that her client wanted to change his plea.
A few days prior to the scheduled Sept. 20 trial date, Moore had ruled against a motion to suppress the contents of tape-recorded telephone calls in which Williams allegedly told Nazario that he could do what he wished to her and get away with it because he was a police officer.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Curtis Gomez told the court he was prepared to prove that Williams had had a long, abusive relationship with Nazario that included a number of instances of violence.
Gomez also said he was ready to prove that on or about Dec. 2, 1998, Williams held a handgun to Nazario's head and told her he would "blow her brains out," causing her to flee her home and go into hiding.
After a lengthy discussion with his attorney Monday, Williams admitted in court that he had threatened Nazario, the mother of his five children, with a gun.
Moore and Gomez agreed to accept Williams' guilty plea on the charge of witness tampering. The assault charge was dropped.
But Gomez said he would not recommend probation for Williams.
Moore said he would set sentencing for a later date.
The defendant, who was vice president of the Police Benevolent Association at the time of his arrest, faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in jail and a $3,000 fine.
However, under Title 5 of the V.I. Code, provision 3711, the judge could, under certain circumstances, impose probation after which Williams' conviction could be wiped from the record, according to Assistant U.S. District Attorney Hugh P. Mabe.
PBA president Elroy Raymo, who was present in the courtroom Monday, as he has been at all of Williams' court appearances, expressed resignation at the change of plea.
Asked if he felt his friend got a fair trial, Raymo said, "What trial? He didn't have a trial. He had a choice. I think he's looking out for his kids, looking out for his family."
Raymo said Williams' future with the Police Department would be up to Gov. Charles W. Turnbull and members of his administration.

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U.S. District Court Judge Thomas K. Moore accepted a last-minute plea bargain Monday by Officer Ian Williams Jr. moments before the scheduled start of opening arguments in the policeman's assault and witness-tampering trial.
Williams, 28, was facing charges that he threatened the life of Brenda Nazario, his companion of 10 years, and tried to intimidate her after she reported his threats to the Internal Affairs Division of the V.I. Police Department.
Jury selection had been completed and jurors were about to enter the courtroom when defense attorney Claudette Ferron signaled the judge that her client wanted to change his plea.
A few days prior to the scheduled Sept. 20 trial date, Moore had ruled against a motion to suppress the contents of tape-recorded telephone calls in which Williams allegedly told Nazario that he could do what he wished to her and get away with it because he was a police officer.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Curtis Gomez told the court he was prepared to prove that Williams had had a long, abusive relationship with Nazario that included a number of instances of violence.
Gomez also said he was ready to prove that on or about Dec. 2, 1998, Williams held a handgun to Nazario's head and told her he would "blow her brains out," causing her to flee her home and go into hiding.
After a lengthy discussion with his attorney Monday, Williams admitted in court that he had threatened Nazario, the mother of his five children, with a gun.
Moore and Gomez agreed to accept Williams' guilty plea on the charge of witness tampering. The assault charge was dropped.
But Gomez said he would not recommend probation for Williams.
Moore said he would set sentencing for a later date.
The defendant, who was vice president of the Police Benevolent Association at the time of his arrest, faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in jail and a $3,000 fine.
However, under Title 5 of the V.I. Code, provision 3711, the judge could, under certain circumstances, impose probation after which Williams' conviction could be wiped from the record, according to Assistant U.S. District Attorney Hugh P. Mabe.
PBA president Elroy Raymo, who was present in the courtroom Monday, as he has been at all of Williams' court appearances, expressed resignation at the change of plea.
Asked if he felt his friend got a fair trial, Raymo said, "What trial? He didn't have a trial. He had a choice. I think he's looking out for his kids, looking out for his family."
Raymo said Williams' future with the Police Department would be up to Gov. Charles W. Turnbull and members of his administration.