Alabama sheriff shot, killed in line of duty; suspect in custody


MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP/WDHN/WSAV) — An Alabama sheriff was shot and killed in the line of duty Saturday, and the suspect has been arrested.

Lowndes County Sheriff John “Big John” Williams was killed Saturday.

Sheriff John “Big John” Williams

Details of the shooting were not immediately released, but Governor Kay Ivey tweeted late Saturday night that Williams “was tragically killed this evening in the line of duty.”

Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall issued a statement early Sunday morning as well. He praised Williams for giving over 40 years to public safety, the last nine years as the Lowndes County Sheriff.

Marshall said that Williams’ death is the fifth line of duty death of an Alabama law enforcement officer to gunfire this year.

“Serving the public in the role of a peace officer is a difficult calling, fraught with peril, yet thankfully many Alabama men and women choose to answer the call, often time putting their lives in danger to protect us,” Marshall said. “It simply cannot be said enough that we owe these heroes our gratitude and our support.”


On Saturday after the killing, the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency issued an Emergency BLUE Alert to locate 18-year-old William Chase Johnson, the shooting suspect. Officials said he was last seen at a QV gas station around 8:15 p.m. Saturday.

Early Sunday morning, officials cancelled the BLUE Alert and confirmed that Johnson was in custody.

This story is developing.

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