Source: Protest in front of Ferguson Police Station (Michael B. Thomas/Getty I / Getty
Updated, Sunday, 3/15/15, 4pm ET:
Jeffrey Williams, a 20-year-old African American man, has been arrested and charged with the shooting of two police officers in Ferguson on early Thursday morning, a Class A felony punishable by life in prison. Williams is being held on a $300,000 cash bond.
St. Louis County prosecutor Bob McCullough held a press conference on Sunday afternoon and confirmed that Williams gave a statement to police saying he was not aiming at them.
“The evidence developed at this point in part [based] on his statement is that he may have had a dispute with some other individuals,” McCullough stated. “We’re not sure if we completely buy that part of it, but in any event, it’s possible that he was firing at some other people and the officers were in the back.” [emphasis ours]
McCullough also said that Williams participated in the protests that night: “He is a demonstrator,” said the prosecutor in response to a reporter’s question. “He was out there earlier that evening as part of the demonstrations.”
Other details from the press conference: According to police, Williams was on probation for receiving stolen property in St. Louis county and hasn’t reported to probation in seven months. Also, that the weapon recovered (a 40 caliber handgun) was tied to the shootings through shell casings.
McCullough also said that Williams was apprehended through the cooperation of the public, and that the ongoing investigation “needs public support.” There was a $10,000 reward for anyone with information leading to any arrest affiliated with the case, though it is not clear yet if anyone has claimed it.
Other charges against Williams include firing a weapon from a vehicle, and three counts of armed criminal action, all felonies.
Watch the entire press conference below:
An arrest has been made in connection with the shooting of two police officers in Ferguson, Missouri, officials said Sunday afternoon, according to the St. Louis County Police Department twitter account.
An arrest has been made in connection with the shooting of two police officers in #Ferguson. Thank you for your help. #saferstl
“An arrest has been made in connection with the shooting of two police officers in #Ferguson. Thank you for your help,” the St. Louis County Police Department said in a tweet just before 1:30 pm ET.
The shooting happened on Thursday evening, after the Ferguson Police Chief Tom Jackson resigned. The shooting left two cops wounded, allegedly with a bullet still lodged in one’s head, according to officials.
The unnamed officers were not part of the Ferguson Police Department, but had come from other municipalities to assist with protests have taken place in Ferguson since unarmed teen Mike Brown was killed in the street in July.
The Webster Groves officer, 32, a seven-year veteran, was shot in the face, the bullet entering under his right eye and becoming lodged behind his ear, officials said. The county officer, 41, a 14-year veteran, was shot in the shoulder, with the bullet coming out of his back.
The officers were released from the hospital about nine hours after the incident.
A press conference with St. Louis County prosecutor Bob McCullough and is set to be held at 2:30 p.m. ET Sunday, officials said.