Another Example Of How The 'COVID Release' Program Is Failing, This Time It Ended With Murder
The number of inmates being released during this COVID-19 epidemic is pretty alarming. It was only a matter of time before we caught wind of some tragic but avoidable crime. The courts are trying their best to only release non-violent offenders but the world just isn't as clear-cut as all that.
That's what they believed they were doing with Joseph Williams in Florida. Now, the 26-year-old is back behind bars for several new charges including second-degree murder with a firearm, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office.
"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," Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister said in a statement.From
"The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office confirms 26-year-old Joseph Edwards Williams was arrested on a warrant Monday night in Gibsonton.
They say he is connected to a March 20 shooting homicide in the Progress Village area. Deputies responded at 10:40 that night to several 911 calls about gunshots fired near 81st Street South and Ash Avenue. A man was pronounced dead at the scene."
“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 a statement. “As a result, I call on the State Attorney to prosecute this defendant to the fullest extent of the law.”
The HCSO released 164 inmates considered low level and non-violent offenders.
“Judges, prosecutors, and Sheriffs around the country are facing difficult decisions during this health crisis with respect to balancing public health and public safety,” Chronister said. “Sheriffs in Florida and throughout our country have released non-violent, low-level offenders to protect our deputies and the jail population from an outbreak. Our commitment as an agency is to keep this community safe and enforce the law.”
Jails are not equipped to handle a wide-spread pandemic so they're being forced to make some pretty tough decisions until a better system is put in to place.