by Philip Holthoff
After Williams escaped prison by hiding in a trash can full of kitchen scraps (allegedly potato peelings) he then jumped out of the back of the garbage truck once it exited the prison and turned onto the main highway. Williams crossed the highway in front of the prison in his prison whites and was immediately seen by several passing cars, the drivers of which called the prison to inform them that they had an escaped inmate. This was around 11 AM on a Sunday and the prison denied it had an inmate loose and refused to do a headcount. In fact they did not do one until around 7PM that night.
Williams took refuge in the bayou and trudged through mud and water. The rumor is he had an accomplice, either someone inside the prison or in the free world, who was supposed to leave him a set of clothes at a certain spot inside the bayou. Either the clothes were never left or Williams was in the wrong spot so he exited the bayou and stepped into the yard of my relative who lived about two miles from the prison.
No one is sure what happened next but the most likely scenario is my relative made a beeline for his truck to retrieve his gun when he saw the inmate in his yard. Unfortunately Williams beat him to it and shot my relative seven times and then threw his body into the bayou. He then entered the house and stole a few items before making his getaway in my relative’s truck. I have no doubt the rest of the family would have been killed also had they not been at church.
Sometimes later that day a chase ensued between the Arkansas State Police and Williams which ended in Missouri when Williams collided with another truck killing its driver, Michael Greenwood. Williams, naturally, emerged from the wreck without a scratch. When finally apprehended Williams was wearing my relative’s hunting coveralls and several of his rings.