Man sought on assault charge

Published 6:00 am Tuesday, February 13, 2007

A Brookhaven man is wanted on a charge of aggravated assault onan officer after allegedly attempting to run down a correctionsofficer in a stolen Ford Aerostar van Monday afternoon, authoritiessaid.

The man was identified as Thomas Williams, also known as”Stagger Lee,” said Brookhaven Police Chief Pap Henderson.

Monday’s incident began around 3:45 p.m. when officers from theMississippi Department of Corrections attempted to serve Williamswith a warrant for probation violation. Allen “Hustle Man” Sydneysaid Williams was sitting in Sydney’s Ford Aerostar van that wasparked at the corner of Independence Street and Dr. Martin L. King,Jr. Dr.

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Sydney said he thought Williams was waiting to buy someValentine’s Day gifts from a vendor who had set up at a building onthe corner. Williams apparently panicked when the correctionsofficers arrived.

“He was waiting in the van. I knew the guy,” said Sydney,although he did not elaborate on their relationship. “When thepolice pulled up, he took off.”

At that point, he pulled away in the van and in the processallegedly attempted to hit Corrections Officer Rhonda Boyd with thevan. Officers fired at the van as Williams made his escape.

Officers found the van a short time later still running andburied to its axle in mud on the gravel road behind Polly’sRestaurant and the old Stahl Urban Building on Main Street.Williams was not in the area.

“The suspect escaped on foot. We’re going to have to hold thevan for a while,” said Henderson. “Obviously since it was used inan attempted assault, it’s a crime scene now.”

Police officers, as well officials as the Lincoln CountySheriff’s Department and MDOC, were at the crime scene.

“They were all there to show concern for a fellow lawenforcement officer,” said Henderson.

Williams, who lives with his mother on Morris Street, is fromBrookhaven. He has family living in the county whom officialsbelieve he might be trying to contact.

Boyd referred requests for comment today to MDOC’s publicaffairs officer, who did not immediately return a call.