An attorney listed for Williams in court papers did not return several calls and text messages seeking comment. Williams has been ordered detained and has a court hearing Dec. 15.
Bill Miller, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office in the District, said his office typically does not comment on charging decisions. He said prosecutors would not comment “beyond what is stated in the charging papers.”
An arrest affidavit filed in D.C. Superior Court says police concluded from accounts of two witnesses that the victim of the shooting, 47-year-old Jamal Butler, was driving a white Jeep that twice rammed the back of a gold Honda, the final time pinning the diver of the Honda, who had gotten out to inspect the damage. Those witnesses then heard gunshots police said were fired by the Honda driver.
The incident occurred shortly after 9:30 a.m. on Nov. 15 at Benning Road and 45th Street in Northeast. D.C. police initially described the shooting as possibly being related to road rage but later said it began as a dispute between Williams and Butler “over the suspect’s possession of the decedent’s vehicle.”
Butler’s wife, Dominique Butler, 34, said her husband discovered his Honda missing from their house the morning of Nov. 15. She said Butler took her Jeep and went looking for his Honda, which they both believed had been stolen.
Meanwhile, the affidavit says, Williams picked up two young children at their parents’ house near where Butler lived and put them in the Honda he was driving. One of the children told police that a man authorities identified as Butler approached the Honda and asked Williams, “Where’s my daughter,” according to the affidavit.
The child told police Williams took out a gun and drove off with the children. The child told police the man in the Jeep began chasing them. Police said they believe Butler mistakenly thought Williams had gotten the Honda from one of Butler’s relatives. Police said they do not know how Williams came to possess Butler’s Honda. They said it was not reported stolen.
Dominique Butler said in an interview last week neither she nor her husband knew Williams or had prior interactions with him. Police said they also did not find any connection between the two.
It appears Butler pursued Williams for several blocks and then rammed the back of the Honda on 45th Street near Benning Road. A witness reported seeing the white Jeep then back up as the driver exited the Honda and walked to the back, as if to inspect the damage.
That witness told police, according to the affidavit, “the white vehicle rammed the gold vehicle again which pinned the man between the two vehicles.” A second witness told police a similar version of events.
Both witnesses described hearing three to four gunshots, according to court papers. Police said there were three bullet holes in the front windshield of the Jeep and that Butler was dead at the scene. Police said Williams, though severely injured, ran away and was found later seeking treatment at a hospital. Police said they found a .40-caliber handgun in a storm drain.