Sheriff and Deputy Cleared

A federal judge says a local sheriff and deputy did not violate the constitutional rights of a suspect that died in their care. It’s the latest of a long list of legal victories for the Lowndes County Sheriff's Office.

Some people feel like justice still hasn't been served. Willie James Williams was arrested in September of 1998. During his arrest, he suffered some trauma but was treated and released from the hospital. He died the next day in the Lowndes County Jail.

Williams' family filed a civil suit, but a judge has recently ruled clear of any wrongdoing.

"It’s always been there for the last five years, but really, I have a lot of faith on the system and a lot of faith in the Lord. In this business we're in, you learn when things are looked at factually, the facts will prevail," says Ashley Faulk, Lowndes County Sheriff.

The Lowndes County Sheriff's Office had already been cleared by a couple other local court rulings and two separate federal investigations, but some people in south believe that justice has not been served.

"Willie James Williams is dead not because of a seizure, he's dead because of what happened to him between the time he was stopped on Lee Street, and the time they found his body in the Lowndes County Jail. Now, if Willie James Williams didn't kill himself, somebody else was responsible for his death. So, who was it?” says Floyd Rose, People’s Tribunal.

The sheriff says some might never believe the department is innocent and it has been cleared in several different investigations.

"There's some of these critics you never silence with anything. A lot of people will not believe the truth, they don't want the truth; the truth is not convenient."

The family of Willie Williams could appeal this ruling, but a decision has not been announced at this time. They will consider their options and made a decision at a later date.