Bond denied for Brunswick police officer

Charges against officer include kidnapping, false imprisonment, assault

BRUNSWICK, Ga. – A Glynn County judge ruled Friday that a police officer accused of taking three hostages at gunpoint and firing shots during a standoff with fellow officers earlier this month will remain in jail. 

The Brunswick Police Department said Darry Williams, a veteran officer, held three people hostage in a vacant office space at an apartment complex on Oct. 8. A judge denied him bond Friday.

Two of Williams' three hostages, a married couple, presented statements Friday to the judge asking that bond be granted. Still, the judge was concerned about the seriousness of the charges and the fact that, to his knowledge, a formal psychiatric evaluation had not been conducted.

Police said Williams, 43, was suspended before the incident took place. Earlier that day he discussed personnel issues with police Capt. Kevin Jones then went to City Hall determined to talk with Mayor Cornell Harvey. But before that conversation, City Hall employees reported hearing Williams say he had a gun and that they had 10 minutes to send the SWAT team.

City Hall was immediately placed on lockdown, and all city employees gathered in a room, but police say Williams had already left, police.

A short time later, police were called to the Norwich Commons Apartments at 3400 Norwich St., where Williams had reportedly locked himself inside a vacant office with three hostages. Police said Williams fired two shots from a TEK 9 machine pistol. One bullet went into an interior wall and one went through the outside glass door.

Police said Williams eventually let each hostage go and no one was hurt.

Bishop Alfred Jackson, who has been Williams' pastor for more than 25 years, said he was the one who helped calm Williams down on the phone just before he was arrested that day. He said his friend hasn't been well for some time.

"He has been going through a lot of stress," Jackson said. "So we kind of feel that if we can get him in some kind of treatment facility to help him overcome this situation, then it would be great."

The plan to get help for Williams may have come too late. His colleague, Evelyn Timmons, testified that in the days leading up to the incident, Williams had behaved erratically, even paranoid, saying people were following him and that his life may be in danger. Timmons said Williams told her he was planning to see the mayor at City Hall on the day of the incident.

"At that time I said, 'DJ, please don't go. Please don't go into the building,'" Timmons said. "He said, 'No, I'm going to go into his office.'"

According to police, Williams made one of the women he held hostage remove her clothing, but the other two hostages refused to strip down. After the two women were released, Williams put the gun on the floor, the male hostage picked it up and walked out the door to safety, dropping the gun outside, police said.

SWAT officers entered the room and took Williams into custody without incident. Police said Williams became violent and kicked several officers as he was being walked to a patrol car. Three officers suffered minor injuries.

Williams is charged with three counts of assault, one count of kidnapping and three counts of false imprisonment. 

"I have no reassurances that he won't be a danger to the community or to himself, and for that, I deny bond," the judge said.

Williams worked for BPD from 1993 to 2005, achieving the rank of lieutenant. He served overseas for several years and was then rehired as a community service officer for BPD in December.

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