Florida Inmate Arrested Over Murder ONE DAY After Coronavirus Prison Release
Violent criminal was among 100 prisoners freed last month over COVID-19 fears
A violent convicted criminal has been arrested in connection with a murder, just one day after he was released from a Florida prison over coronavirus fears.
The inmate, Joseph Edward Williams, 26, was among 100 prisoners freed last month to help slow the spread of COVID-19.
However, Williams was back behind bars Monday after he was taken into custody over his alleged involvement in a shooting death that occurred on the day after his release, authorities say.
Williams is linked to a shooting that left one person dead in the Progress Village section of Gibsonton, Hillsborough County, about 11 miles southeast of Tampa.
Williams had been inside the Orient Road Jail on drug charges when he was released, FOX 13 of Tampa reported
He was freed along with the other prisoners as part of efforts to protect inmates, civilian employees and law enforcement officers from the Chinese virus, also known as COVID-19, the report said.
“There is no question Joseph Williams took advantage of this health emergency to commit crimes while he was out of jail awaiting resolution of a low-level, non-violent offense,” Sheriff Chad Chronister said in announcing the arrest.
“Every murder, every violent crime, especially those involving a gun, is a sickening example of the worst in our community, especially at a time when our community is working relentlessly to fight against the spread of this deadly COVID-19.”
The unidentified victim of the March 20 shooting was found wounded and lying in the street, then died later at a hospital, authorities told FOX 13.
After an investigation, Williams was arrested on charges of second-degree murder, resisting arrest with violence, being a felon in possession of a firearm, and possession of heroin and drug paraphernalia, the report said.
Williams has a long history of past offenses, including for burglary and possession of a firearm, having been arrested some 35 times, the sheriff’s office said.
Meanwhile, in New York, a convicted murderer has been re-arrested for allegedly robbing a bank after being released early from NYC's notorious Rikers Island prison over the coronavirus pandemic.
As Neon Nettle reported last week, law enforcement officials say the violent felon was arrested around a week after being freed from jail.
The convict, James Little, “was cut loose from the jail because of the coronavirus outbreak on March 28 after being locked up for strangulation earlier in the month,” police sources reportedly told The New York Post.
“About a week later on the morning of April 7, Little allegedly tried to rob an Apple Bank on Irving Place in Gramercy Park,” the Post added.
Little was “on parole for a 1995 murder” and the alleged strangulation stemmed from “charges of assaulting his girlfriend,” The New York Daily News notes.
He was arrested on March 3 over the alleged incident inside his girlfriend’s home in Brooklyn, according to the Daily News.