Jury Convicts Ex-Police Officer in 2016 Double Homicide

Francis Williams (VIPD photo)
Francis Williams (VIPD photo)

Former V.I. Police Department officer Francis Williams was convicted Tuesday of murdering two fellow police officers almost three years ago, according to the V.I. Police Department of Justice.

Williams was arrested in September of 2016 for the August 2016 killings, apparently motivated by anger over being romantically spurned.

Following five days of testimony and after almost two days of deliberation, jurors unanimously convicted Williams, of Estate Whim on St. Croix, of two counts each of second-degree murder, voluntary manslaughter, use of a firearm in the commission of a crime of violence and first-degree assault, and one count of stalking in connection with the Aug. 11, 2016, shooting deaths of Police Officer Lesha Lammy, 33, and Police Officer Kai Javois, 31.

Williams was remanded to the Golden Grove Correctional Facility immediately after the jury verdict was announced to await sentencing. V.I. Superior Court Judge Harold Willocks, who presided over the trial, set sentencing for Aug. 21.

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Police launched a search for Lammy and Javois on Aug. 11, 2016, after family and friends reported that they tried contacting them and they were not answering their cell phones. The two were last seen on Aug. 10, 2016. The Virgin Islands Police Department dispatched officers to the area of Ham’s Bluff who, upon arrival, saw two black individuals later identified as Lammy and Javois lying on the ground with no vital signs. Both bodies bore multiple gunshot wounds – Lammy suffered three gunshot wounds to the neck and chest and Javois’ body was riddled with five bullet wounds to the head, hands, arm and abdomen, according to court documents.

At the crime scene, officers of the VIPD Forensic Unit recovered and collected a spent casing for a .40 caliber weapon within 12.6 feet of Javois’ head. On August 12, 2016, a search warrant was executed at 49-A Estate Whim, 7-BB Estate Whim, 44-F Estate Whim and a 2004 Toyota Tacoma, black, four-door vehicle to search for the two victims’ cell phones and service weapons. The result of that search yielded only Williams’ .40-caliber 27 Glock pistol. Later that same day, Corporal Carlton Wakefield, Williams’ brother, advised police that he went into Williams’ room and retrieved a .40 caliber .22 Glock semi-automatic pistol. A firearms test conducted on Aug. 14, 2016, revealed that the cartridge case collected from the Hans Bluff crime scene matched the Glock (Austria) Model 22, .40 S&W, semi-automatic pistol, bearing the serial number KLC862 – Williams’ department-issued service revolver at the time.

During their investigations, police officers also interviewed several witnesses, including three police officers. One witness told police that Lammy and Williams were in a “back and forth” relationship and that Lammy broke it off with him. The witness told police that Lammy called her one night and said that when she left her house to go out with her friends, Williams “was outside the house and, at some point, prevented her from going to meet her friends by snatching the keys out of the car.” The witness told police that on Aug. 10, 2016, she received a phone call from Lammy indicating that Williams had come to her house and blocked Javois’ vehicle to prevent Lammy and Javois from leaving. The witness said Lammy was heading to the police station to make a report. Video surveillance cameras showed that Lammy arrived at the police station at Rainbow Complex at 12:10 p.m. that day, but left without making a complaint, according to court records.

Another witness testified that Lammy complained to her of Williams’ “continuous harassment and stalking,” and reported to the witness the harassment she was experiencing, according to an affidavit filed by Det. Frankie Ortiz in support of Williams’ arrest.

Based on witnesses’ statements and other evidence, police arrested Williams on 12 charges.

 

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