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Richmond deputy shoots, kills suspect

Man was wielding knife; GBI is investigating

EMILY ROSE BENNETT/STAFF
A body is removed from crime scene Friday morning after a shooting involving sheriff's deputies
Friday, Feb. 1, 2013 6:37 AM
Last updated Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013 1:37 AM
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A Richmond County deputy fatally shot a knife-wielding man Friday morning, an action that Sheriff Richard Roundtree said appeared to be justified.

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The body of a fatal shooting victim is loaded into a hearse at Fox Den Apartments on Friday morning.   EMILY ROSE BENNETT/STAFF
EMILY ROSE BENNETT/STAFF
The body of a fatal shooting victim is loaded into a hearse at Fox Den Apartments on Friday morning.


“We have no evidence supporting the idea that any wrongdoing was done (by the officer),” Roundtree said at an afternoon news conference. “We believe the deadly force policy was followed.”

According to authorities, Deputy Michael J. Woodard killed Chaz Devell Williams, 21, after confronting him in a residence at Fox Den Apartments in the 3200 block of Wrightsboro Road. Deputies said they had been looking for Williams for about two hours after he had driven away from a police traffic stop, wrecked his car and fled.

Pat Morgan, the special agent in charge for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, said a deputy began pursuing Williams’ car around 2:20 a.m. after he failed to stop for unspecified traffic offenses. That pursuit ended near Church’s Chicken on Wrightsboro Road when the vehicle ran into a fence and its driver, believed to be Williams, ran away. More officers were called in, and a search eventually led them to Fox Den Apartments.

According to Morgan, a group of deputies entered Apartment 133 about 4 a.m. and tried to take Williams into custody.

“There were several weapons in the home,” Morgan said. “A knife was involved.”

Woodard, a five-year veteran of the sheriff’s office, fired more than one shot, killing the suspect, Morgan said.

Morgan would not elaborate on what led the officer to use his weapon or how the knife was involved. He said he was still interviewing witnesses, including two people who were at the residence at the time.

Roundtree said that, in general, police officers can use deadly force when they believe their lives or the life of another is in danger.

After the GBI concludes its investigation, the case will be handed over to the district attorney’s office.

Roundtree said there are no plans to suspend Woodard. He said the officer would be required to attend a session with a counselor before returning to work.

The Peace Officer Standards and Training Council requires that all officers complete deadly force training each year.

The dead man has a Richmond County arrest record, including a charge of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute in Augusta 2011. The charge was reduced to possession of cocaine, and Williams was sentenced to three years’ probation.

Last August, Williams was arrested on charges of driving on a suspended/revoked license and having an expired tag.

An autopsy is scheduled this morning, Morgan said.

Comments (92) Add comment
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Riverman1
90657
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Riverman1 02/02/13 - 12:07 pm
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2
You serious?

Austin asked, "...why are you doubting me?"

Why would I doubt you? You serious?

Riverman1
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Riverman1 02/02/13 - 12:11 pm
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Willow

I have complained about a zillion things Roundtree has done in the past. I supported Freddie. I can most certainly have it both ways or more. We have all done some silly things, don't you think? The particular incident is what's important now and apropos to this article and discussion. Plus, grammar is important from a public official in my mind.

Austin Rhodes
2970
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Austin Rhodes 02/02/13 - 12:12 pm
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3
I am the one who signs my name here...

...not you. If you fib, no one cares.

The letter was copied as it originally arrived. Phone numbers and email addresses were deleted (for privacy...including Roundtree's cell number). There was a Sheriff's department logo under his signature, and the usual disclaimer that follows ALL county emails, that was not included, simply because they did not copy on the cut and paste. I would have been happy to include his insignia, but it did not make the transfer.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 02/02/13 - 12:15 pm
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Austin, so you chose to

Austin, so you chose to include the typos. Understood.

Talk about using anonymous names... when I had "Riverman" screamed over the radio yesterday by you, I'd be foolish to use my real name here, even though you know me and have met me.

Willow Bailey
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Willow Bailey 02/02/13 - 12:25 pm
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River, silly, is using using

River, silly, is using a limo service. The theft issue with the secretary looks more unlawful to me.

Who doesn't prefer an educated, polished, articulate individual? What I'm saying is, he is what he is, and given a choice, I'll take truthful over silver tongue or keyboard any day.

Roundtree does have a unique chance to make a huge difference not only in crime, but, attitude in Augusta. Here's hoping he will use his influence in the right ways.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 02/02/13 - 12:25 pm
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1
Limo Was Silly

Willow, I agree with that. But I also agree with your last statement: "Roundtree does have a unique chance to make a huge difference not only in crime, but, attitude in Augusta. Here's hoping he will use his influence in the right ways."

corgimom
36770
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corgimom 02/02/13 - 12:40 pm
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2
Tasers kill people too, dead

Tasers kill people too, dead is dead, doesn't matter if it's by a Taser or a gun.

And Tasers aren't always effective, especially if a suspect is on drugs. They are not the perfect solution like people think they are.

Nobody would've had to have shot anybody if Chaz Williams hadn't made the multiple terrible decisions that he did. Run from the police, there's a high probability that you will die. He chose to run.

What is truly terrible is that he went to his girlfriend's house, knowing that she and that baby were there, and put them in danger too. And nobody wants to talk about that.

How could you ever do that to a loved one, and a defenseless child?

seenitB4
93730
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seenitB4 02/02/13 - 12:45 pm
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1
Too bad

That some can't be as gracious as Freddie was when he lost to Rtree

corgi...you are making a lot of sense on here..:)

RM...do ya need any help ...Nahhh I didn't think so either...:)

Rtree...if you are reading this...please remember many of us want you to succeed....good luck.

seenitB4
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seenitB4 02/02/13 - 12:49 pm
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About the limo

If the taxpayer didn't pay for it who cares....

Riverman1
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Riverman1 02/02/13 - 12:50 pm
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Thanks, SeenIt. Btw, my other

Thanks, SeenIt. Btw, my other mail has been turned off for a few months in case you wondered.

seenitB4
93730
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seenitB4 02/02/13 - 12:52 pm
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1
I do

I wonder about YOU a lot....hahaha.....nice to know that!

seenitB4
93730
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seenitB4 02/02/13 - 01:00 pm
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Just wondering.

How does Columbia county Sheriffs Office distribute their info???

Have to make some $$ here....seeyall..

Willow Bailey
20603
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Willow Bailey 02/02/13 - 01:18 pm
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5
Who is being ungracious? We

Who is being ungracious? We are just discussing the story and quite friendly about it.

The limo was used as a comparison and not a complaint.

Of course those of us who actually live here, want Sheriff Roundtree to succeed. Why wouldn't we?

Sheriff Whittle has nothing to do with this.

happychimer
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happychimer 02/02/13 - 02:25 pm
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4
Richard Roundtree must be

Richard Roundtree must be handling the situation pretty good. I don't hear anything about riots. Roundtree knows how to handle the situation a lot better than those who find fault with anything he does.

Willow Bailey
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Willow Bailey 02/02/13 - 03:31 pm
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Yes, by all means. let's all

Yes, by all means. let's all stick our heads in the sand while others tell us what to believe and speak.

OpenCurtain
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OpenCurtain 02/02/13 - 04:27 pm
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GiantsAllDay - Goes off

My cranial cavity is a tiny crowded place, and there isn't enough room for both of us in here. So i don't you need implying my thoughts and may I also ask you to watch from the outside?

Nice liberal attempt to use kids and their murders to discredit an opposing comment.

I again say the subject is still a RCSO initially justified police shooting, not things that happen in SLC months ago.

BTW: The Sandy Hooks incident affected a nation.

mooseye
266
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mooseye 02/02/13 - 04:27 pm
2
1
Well,

this is a bad thing for all involved.
This guy probably had a suspended license or maybe a warrant for probation violation??, so he thought he could come out better by rabbiting. When that didn't work, he decides to fight his way out with a knife against several armed deputies. Bad choice! It was evident that they knew who he was since they were able to find him so quickly, so why would anyone think that cutting your way out thru a mob of deputies would be better than a little time in jail, or even be possible?
I doubt that many that make those kinds of choices ever read these postings, but if one does, please take this as an example of what not to do.
Chances are, this young man could have been sent back to jail for just running from the law, but at least he would be alive.
I usually hang the blame on bad parenting, but I now include Hollywood. Very few movies that do not involve some firearms and glorified killing.
We see shows and movies everyday with people fighting the law and maybe winning and getting away. Please? That doesn't happen very often in real life.
Please think long and hard before breaking the law and for sure before trying to fight LEOs.

happychimer
19392
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happychimer 02/02/13 - 04:32 pm
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the Sandy Hooks incident

the Sandy Hooks incident affected our nation, and Georgia is a part of this nation, so it DID affect Georgia.

Willow Bailey
20603
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Willow Bailey 02/02/13 - 06:12 pm
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3
The point is Sandy Hooks has

The point is Sandy Hooks has nothing to do with this discussion.

Willow Bailey
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Willow Bailey 02/02/13 - 06:17 pm
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I agree mooseye and it is

I agree mooseye and it is also certainly hard to believe that anyone could be that irrational on their own. Toxicology may answer the questions.

happychimer
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happychimer 02/02/13 - 07:00 pm
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Sticking heads in the sand

Sticking heads in the sand has nothing to do with this discussion either.

oldredneckman96
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oldredneckman96 02/02/13 - 07:17 pm
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Deputy
Unpublished

Great demonstration of gun control! Thank you, Michael J. Woodard for the lives you have saved in the future. One less criminal in our world.

OpenCurtain
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OpenCurtain 02/02/13 - 07:22 pm
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OK let us talk about

Insert any unrelated topic...

other than the RCSO Deputy shooting the knife welding person, who was charging at him blade 1st, according to some published reports.

oldredneckman96
5115
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oldredneckman96 02/02/13 - 07:23 pm
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Criminals
Unpublished

If Chaz Devell Williams had been in jail for the crimes he had been already convicted of, he would have been alive at least. Think about that Judges who let him walk, you are responceble for his death and what could have been the death of a Deputy.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 02/02/13 - 07:37 pm
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RCSO Was Working Hard in the Community After Shooting

I believe most of us support the officer in that situation. The fact is Sheriff Roundtree, officers and his RCSO spokespeople were working hard in that community to keep things calm after the shooting while holding details from the media temporarily. Some of the attacks on Sheriff Roundtree and the RCSO are out of line.

Willow Bailey
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Willow Bailey 02/02/13 - 07:43 pm
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"Head in sand" was used as a

"Head in sand" was used as a euphemism to describe unreasonable expectations relating to commenting on the subject.

Willow Bailey
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Willow Bailey 02/02/13 - 07:47 pm
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I must really be missing

I must really be missing something. I'll have to go back and reread all the comments. What attacks were made on Sheriff Roundtree and the RCSO on this thread?

Gage Creed
18915
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Gage Creed 02/02/13 - 08:53 pm
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Don't tase me Bro....Oh you

Don't tase me Bro....Oh you don't have a taser? Then I guess its the Mozambique/failure drill eh?

myfather15
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myfather15 02/02/13 - 11:58 pm
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Why do people absolutely

Why do people absolutely refuse to listen? Austin hit on the most important point; in reference to tasers; how often do they fail? Quit being LAZY and look it up yourself. LEARN what you are talking about, before spouting untruths. Tasers DO NOT work all the time. It depends very much on how far apart the probes seperate (at least 1 foot is preferred). Shooting a taser at a suspect within 7 feet will NOT give you a good spread, therefore they will not have MAXIMUM effect. Is the suspect wearing heavy clothing that might prevent the probes from penetrating, therefore not effecting the suspect at all.

I've personally tased numerous suspects and been involved with numerous others. Some have worked, others haven't. I once shot a suspect who I was fighting with, only for the probes to hit his sternum and bounce off. He still charged me, I got wrapped up in the cords and took a taser ride myself. I've seen the probes enter, then pull out and the effect is lost. I could go on and on with actual incidents of tasers failing. Yes, over all I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE the taser. Why? Because it has got me OUT of more fights, without ever having to use it. When someone is refusing to cooperate and you DISPLAY the taser, it works quite well. PREVENTION is the best aspect of the taser. It gains a LOT of voluntary compliance when displayed.

But, all of these brave police haters on here. I would just love to see them put their actions where their mouth runs daily. I would love to see you TRAINED about a taser, then YOU decide to use it against a CHARGING, ARMED suspect. You can sit behind your computer all day long, saying what you would do but my EDUCATED guess is, you would shoot.

You do NOT use less lethal force against DEADLY FORCE. Remember my earlier post about AOJ. If all those are present and the suspect is presenting deadly force to a deputy, you use deadly force. If you don't like is specsta, giants or whomever. Work to change the law, but that will be the day I get out and give the streets to you!!

myfather15
55844
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myfather15 02/03/13 - 12:01 am
1
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@americafirst

Thank you for your 7:58 am comment. First person I've seen to bring up that point. Factually correct!! Thank you again!!

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