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Suspect shot by deputy died of multiple gunshot wounds, GBI says

Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2013 1:01 PM
Last updated Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2013 1:27 AM
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An Augusta man killed by police last week died of gunshot wounds, authorities said Tuesday.

The body of Chaz Devell Williams was loaded into a hearse at Fox Den Apartments on Friday morning. Pat Morgan, the special agent in charge for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, said Williams was shot several times by Richmond County sheriff's deputy Michael J. Woodard and died of the gunshot wounds.  EMILY ROSE BENNETT/FILE
EMILY ROSE BENNETT/FILE
The body of Chaz Devell Williams was loaded into a hearse at Fox Den Apartments on Friday morning. Pat Morgan, the special agent in charge for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, said Williams was shot several times by Richmond County sheriff's deputy Michael J. Woodard and died of the gunshot wounds.


Pat Morgan, the special agent in charge for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, said Chaz Devell Williams, 21, was shot several times by Richmond County sheriff’s Deputy Michael J. Woodard early Friday in his home at Fox Den Apartments in the 3200 block of Wrightsboro Road.

Morgan said Williams had what appeared to be two self-inflicted knife wounds to his neck, but it was the gunshot wounds that proved fatal. He declined to say how many shots were fired or how many wounds Williams suffered.

Authorities said deputies had tracked Williams to his apartment after he eluded them about two hours earlier in a chase that began when he didn’t stop his car for unspecified traffic violations. 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.

Police said a group of deputies entered Williams’ apartment about 4 a.m. Morgan said at some point a bloodied, knife-welding Williams confronted police and came at them with a knife. At that point Woodard fired his pistol, he said.

Morgan said he was still seeking to interview a few more witnesses before completing his investigation.

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rational thought trumps emotion
2323
Points
rational thought trumps emotion 02/05/13 - 02:18 pm
9
0

Morgan said at some point a

Morgan said at some point a bloodied, knife-wielding Williams confronted police and came at them with a knife. Anyone who has ever gone through police training knows there is only one response you are trained to do in this case and that is discharge your firearm towards the center mass of the suspect until the threat stops. Training does not call for the use of a baton, Taser (if the Sheriff's Office had them) or anything else when being threatened with deadly force. It is unfortunate but it sounds as if this man who was trying to kill himself then charged with a knife at deputies who had their weapons drawn on him knew what the outcome would be. Police Officers are forced to make split second decisions that could cost them their life and this deputy made the only choice possible in this situation. While the loss of life is never something to be happy about, we should all be very thankful that none of those who are sworn to serve and protect us were injured nor were the other potential victims in the apartment.

Austin Rhodes
2674
Points
Austin Rhodes 02/05/13 - 02:53 pm
6
2

I was told long ago...

...that you never meet LETHAL FORCE with anything other than LETHAL FORCE. That is the rule, is it not, officers ?

GnipGnop
10960
Points
GnipGnop 02/05/13 - 03:15 pm
7
1

Also...

Never bring a knife to a gun fight....

rational thought trumps emotion
2323
Points
rational thought trumps emotion 02/05/13 - 04:16 pm
4
1

Correct Austin

Autsin, you are 100% correct in regards to the use of lethal force and what the training entails.

David Parker
7919
Points
David Parker 02/05/13 - 04:33 pm
4
7

Just wish we had evidence

Just wish we had evidence that he was the one they were after for the car chase, which was brought on because of an "unspecified traffic violation".

So ole boy had it with cops and getting written up for traffic infractions and said, "I'm outtie!"? Really? Suicide by cop? For a speeding ticket? I'll be very surprised if there isn't more to the story. Would be better if everyone could get a comprehensive understanding about what went down, instead of pieces of info that could or could-not-be accurate. This happened last week right?

myfather15
42209
Points
myfather15 02/05/13 - 05:29 pm
4
2

@Austin

You're correct; each department has their own use of force policy. If officers are confronted with physical resistance but no weapon, we must start with the least amount of force necessary to effect the arrest. In the case of resistance with no weapons, we start with verbal commands, then soft hand techniques (Grabbing and trying to hold them or take them to the ground), then HARD hand techniques, which can be striking the subject with a closed fist in order to gain compliance. Then on to other non-lethals such as Asp baton, pepper spray or taser.

But NEVER, NEVER, NEVER do you meet deadly force with less than deadly force. You might get away with it once, but its eventually going to cost an officer their lives. I once was involved with an officer tasing a subject swinging a baseball bat at another officer and charging him. But two officers had their weapons drawn and the other went around the back side and tased the subject in the back. It worked, but notice what I said; two other officers had their duty weapons drawn and pointed at the suspect, ready in case anything went wrong. It worked and no one died, thank God. But you CAN NOT make a policy to meet deadly force with less lethal force. It will get officers killed in mass throughout the Country. Each situation is completely different; if the officers on the scene believe they are able to disarm a suspect without shooting him, they have the discretion to attempt it. But it CAN'T be policy to do so.

KSL
106287
Points
KSL 02/05/13 - 11:14 pm
3
2

Common sense

Never, never go at someone with a knife acting like you are going to cut them if they have a loaded gun.

KSL
106287
Points
KSL 02/05/13 - 11:17 pm
2
3

I saw the interview on TV

I saw the interview on TV with the deceased's girlfriend. She was sad, but her demeanor and her words seemed to indicated that she was not surprised at the outcome of events.

HenryWalker3rd
2393
Points
HenryWalker3rd 02/06/13 - 09:46 am
0
4

The other sheriff surely didn't care

Unpublished

Actually KSL, she seemed very distraught ....she even said, "...they didn't have to kill him, though."

She also has said that the deceased did not want to go back to jail. His first charge wasn't even a serious one. It's a sad case.

Atleast we now have a sheriff who seems to care about all of these young black males dying in the streets on a regular basis. The other sheriff surely didn't care.

itsanotherday1
34920
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itsanotherday1 02/06/13 - 11:00 am
2
0

How do you know he cares?

How do you know he cares? Or that the former sheriff didn't?

oneofthesane
2201
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oneofthesane 02/06/13 - 11:08 am
0
0
oneofthesane
2201
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oneofthesane 02/06/13 - 11:10 am
1
0

Atleast we now have a sheriff who seems to care about all of....

Unpublished

Yes, because their mom's and dad's dont......oh wait.....nevermind.

David Parker
7919
Points
David Parker 02/06/13 - 11:29 am
1
1

I suspected the charges

I suspected the charges weren't serious, which is what I said earlier. All the debbie-thumb downers would just as much not be bothered by the details. Hey, I don't want LEO's to face death at their job, but it's part of the job by design. If the girlfriend had some premonition that the outcome was going to be a death, I don't see how things could have been avoided. I'm just unsatisfied with a system that convinces a person to take a life (theirs or other) over a minor violation of the law. And LEO's shouldn't have to expect that from someone who commits smaller infractions. But that is the system and the mentality of Mr Williams and this lethal combination is the result. Sad and depressing that there isn't a better alternative. There isn't a better alternative right?

myfather15
42209
Points
myfather15 02/06/13 - 12:07 pm
1
1

Well Dave......

Why don't you become part of the solution and come up with a better system, instead of blaming the system when an individual makes a terrible decision. My mother always taught me that people will make mistakes, and she taught me when you do something wrong, you admit to it and take your punishment. If this individual would have taken responsibility for his "minor" violations, we wouldn't be reading this story, would we?

No, minor offenses aren't worth a life, I agree with you on that. But when we are trying to arrest someone for those MINOR offenses, and THEY decide to meet us with deadly force, we must take action to protect ourselves. Honestly, what would you have us do? As soon as this suspect displayed a knife and came at the Deputies, would YOU have them say "Arresting him isn't worth all this"; then run out of the home and return to doing other things? Leaving the suspect in the home, because he only committed minor violations?

Ok, what if the suspect then kills his girlfriend in a fit of rage? Is the Sheriff's Office then liable because they KNEW this suspect was wanted and acting violent, but still left him at the scene, because he threatened violence towards them? They didn't feel his violations were serious enough to have to fight him to effect an arrest, so they just leave him there and walk away. Yeah right, the Sheriffs Office would get their pants sued off if that person goes out and kills a civilian. They would be held COMPLETELY responsible for the loss of life, when they had an opportunity to arrest the suspect prior to the murder.

You wouldn't hear anyone talking about his "Minor violations" then; you would only hear about the Sheriffs Office not doing their jobs. So, go ahead and tell us exactly how you would handle the situation. Tell us how you would paint a pretty picture in the awful reality of law enforcement.

myfather15
42209
Points
myfather15 02/06/13 - 12:26 pm
1
1

Oh, by the way......

Yes, there is a better system but its not happening during this dispensation of time. Its called God's system and it will be perfect. Why will His system be perfect? Because there will not exist a human being that would harm any other. They shall all be destroyed!! We shall live in perfect peace!! As the Bible says, children will be able to play in the streets without concern.

No, as long as we are in this dispensation of time (mankind ruling) we will always have these problems. There is no miracle fix when individuals choose to use their free will to harm others. But, feel free to come up with a system to fix everything. Just remember, you're human and you'll never fix everything!!

David Parker
7919
Points
David Parker 02/06/13 - 01:39 pm
2
2

father15. You are taking

father15. You are taking alot for granted here:

But when we are trying to arrest someone for those MINOR offenses, and THEY decide to meet us with deadly force, we must take action

The story alludes to it but by reading my OP, you'd know I was pointing out the lack of detail and accuracy. Sorry brother, just not that cut and dry.

straight shooter
50
Points
straight shooter 02/06/13 - 01:44 pm
1
1

PAT Morgan

Ive known GBI Agent Pat Morgan for years and he is without a doubt a great investigator, and is of the highest integerity. as far as this situation goes its a simple case of doing the right thing had he stopped like he should have none of this would of happen, everyone is accountable for their own actions. Dave the fantasy world you live in must be nice, but here in the real world the reality is you abide by the law and if you attempt to cut someone that person must defend themselves. Im just glad all LEO involved are safe and send my thanks to all of them that risk there lives everyday protecting others.

David Parker
7919
Points
David Parker 02/06/13 - 02:00 pm
1
1

Bash me, that's right.

Let it all out. Now breath and accept that your input is flawed.

Your comment, like Pop15 = " had he stopped like he should have none of this would of happen"

Where does it say that he was the guy that bailed out of the car that wrecked into Churches. God bless I hope yall aren't bankers or something that requires accuracy.

The story shows they "believed" it to be Williams and it was an "unspecified violation" and it is suspected that he met the LEO with "lethal force". Nowhere does it say these things occurred, just that it would be typical or make sense if these theories were accurate and they may end up being just that. So the "unspecified violation" could be aggravated, we just don't know. I appreciate your guidance suggestion on not blaming the system, but I am very clear on where blame resides and appropriately so.

David Parker
7919
Points
David Parker 02/06/13 - 02:07 pm
1
1

btw shooter, what reality

btw shooter, what reality world are you referring to where you make up details and events.

story never said dude cut anybody. Why should yall care for silly accuracy check though. Keep on makin me proud!

ps. Here is the first post I made, my thesis if you will.

Just wish we had evidence that he was the one they were after

Tell me again how we can assume he was the perp. (insert Willie Wonka photo meme)

Darby
19291
Points
Darby 02/06/13 - 02:08 pm
3
0

"Never, never go at someone with a knife.....

.... acting like you are going to cut them if they have a loaded gun."

Good advice IF YOU ARE talking to a rational, thinking person. Anyone else, you are wasting your breath.

On the other hand, a rational, thinking person doesn't need that advice.

David Parker
7919
Points
David Parker 02/06/13 - 02:24 pm
2
1

Does condescension just come

Does condescension just come naturally?

"So, go ahead and tell us exactly how you would handle the situation. Tell us how you would paint a pretty picture in the awful reality of law enforcement." father15's post

I wouldn't rush to judgment like you and ole shooter. I'd make sure this wasn't a case of assumption so that something horrible wouldn't happen. For instance, I'm asleep and the cops track a perp to my house, enter as they did in this story, and then I awake, pull my weapon to stop the intruder and somebody dies.

See how details seem to put everything into context? I guess in the end, my "solution" or system improvement would be relegated to the media to dig harder and stick to facts rather than speculating or using suggestive terminology to fill in the blanks.

myfather15
42209
Points
myfather15 02/06/13 - 07:53 pm
3
1

Your OPINION is that of a

Your OPINION is that of a civilian who has absolutely NO IDEA how law enforcement works. I've been a Deputy Sheriff for 16 years and I KNOW exactly how it works. I guarantee they confirmed his identity, through INVESTIGATION, before entering that home. I'm also SURE they confirmed he was in that home, before they entered. Why? Because I've been in this EXACT scenario MANY times. We do our work VERY well Dave, very well. But, people like you who appear to be anti-law enforcement would never be satified, regardless of what evidence you see.

Your comment is completely ridiculous because YOU are ASSSUMING they DIDN'T make sure of his identity, therefore you are ASSUMING they were ASSUMING!! Are you not? Since according to you, the report doesn't stated they confirmed, so they must have been assuming, right? I've been in this job for a long time; i've seen enough to trust that the vast majority of times, deputies do their jobs with honor and integrity. If they had to shoot someone, it wasn't in cold blood, it was necessary to prevent themselves or others from being harmed. I'm also smart enough to realize there are bad seeds in EVERY profession where there are large numbers of people working. There are some bad seeds in law enforcement, but through the process; they usually do NOT last long.

JRC2024
6966
Points
JRC2024 02/07/13 - 12:40 am
1
0

Dave, the only thing I agree

Dave, the only thing I agree with you on is that if a LEO officer makes the wrong decision and goes in the wrong home and the occupant has a gun and shoots and someone dies then that is wrong. If the officer dies it would not be murder but if the LEO shoots the occupant then there should be a charge because he or she was in the wrong home. OTHER than that the officer has every right to defend himself when someone comes at them with a knife. Put yourself in their place and then decide what you would do. I would bet you would not say in a timid voice-stop now or I will shoot. You would probably be hurt by then. These guys keep people away from people like you and me and I thank them for that.

Darby
19291
Points
Darby 02/07/13 - 12:51 am
2
1

Dave....

I have read and re-read your post. It STILL MAKE NO SENSE..

Sorry about that...

Darby
19291
Points
Darby 02/08/13 - 12:36 am
1
0

Will the person who gave me a thumbs down...

please explain Dave's post to me. He/she must have understood it.

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