Friday, September 30 2022

STARK COUNTY, Ohio (WOIO) – The Stark County prosecutor announced the grand jury decision regarding a shooting involving an officer that took place on New Years Day.

The press conference took place at 4 p.m. where it was announced that Officer Hubert was not charged with the murder of James Williams.

No further action will be taken by the Stark County prosecutor.

In an initial press release following the incident, the cantonal police said:

“When the officer, who was outside of his vehicle, confronted a subject who began firing a gun. The officer, fearing for his safety, fired his service weapon at the subject and struck him.

The man who was shot by the officer has been identified as James “Roe” Williams.

According to police, Williams was taken to an area hospital where he eventually died from his gunshot wounds.

Williams’ wife Marquetta told 19 News they were in their garden ringing in the New Year when the officer opened fire.

“My husband and I went out there to shoot some shots in the air, like everyone does to celebrate,” Williams said.

Marquetta said her husband was behind the 6-foot-tall wooden privacy fence at the time.

“You can’t see inside. You can’t see outside,” she said. “We didn’t know who it was when it happened because nobody said anything. They didn’t say, “Stop, stop, police!” Nothing, they just shot him,” she told 19 News.

In the police video, the officer is seen approaching the fence after hearing the gunshots. He then shoots into the fence. However, no warning or order is heard given by the officer until the cop pulls the trigger.

Williams’ wife is now demanding justice, telling 19 News it was her husband who was put in a dangerous situation by the police.

Robert Meeker, the Williams family attorney, released a statement regarding the decision:

Over the past two weeks, the Stark County District Attorney presented the tragic death of James Williams by Township Police Officer Robert Huber to the Stark County Grand Jury. Today, the Williams family is deeply disappointed with the decision not to charge Constable Huber. Since January 1, 2022, for eight months, the Williams family has dealt with unimaginable grief and grief that comes with the loss of a husband, father and friend. They’ve had bad day after bad day, and today is no exception.

The tragic death of James Williams, who was shot through a fence by Officer Huber without announcing his presence first, was shown to everyone in the released body camera video. James’ death could have been avoided and should never have happened. While we are not privy to the evidence and testimony presented during the grand jury proceedings, the Williams family looks forward to the future fact-finding process and thorough review of the complete BCI investigation files during of their release by the Ohio Attorney General’s office.

Although the Williams family is saddened that Officer Huber does not have to face criminal charges, the Williams family and their legal team are firmly committed to continuing to fight for justice through the civilian justice system to to hold accountable those responsible for James’ death. . The Williams family will continue to peacefully advocate for police reform to change the system that allowed this tragedy to happen. Although the Stark County District Attorney was unsuccessful in getting justice for James, we won’t stop until we succeed.

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