By Lincoln G. Peters
Police in Monrovia have charged Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) militant brigade member Lawrence K. Williams with murder for intentionally killing Unity Party partisans who were celebrating Amb. Joseph Nyumah Boakai’s presidential victory.
Following a police investigation into the mayhem, the Liberia National Police (LNP) on Monday, 27 November 2023 charged Williams with multiple crimes including murder, aggravated assault and recklessly endangering another person.
The police said the accused “criminally, purposely, and intentionally” caused the death of three victims in persons of Peter Gray, Mariama Kromah, and Varney Sulieman.
The police reported that the horrific incident occurred on the night of 21 November 2023, hours after the National Elections Commission (NEC) declared opposition leader Amb. Boakai as the winner of the 14 November presidential run-off.
The declaration sparked jubilation in Monrovia during which UP partisans and supporters assembled at their party headquarters before Williams allegedly rammed a vehicle through the victims.
Police investigators said they established that defendant Williams is a staunch supporter of the ruling CDC and a member of the Militant Brigade of the CDC.
The police said Williams has accordingly associated with the organizations for over two years.
According to police, defendant Williams’ action was intentional and indifferent to the value of human lives, leaving the investigation with the conviction that there was indeed a motive.
The police claimed that there was an alleged monetary and psychological benefit, which Williams must have allegedly received from an unidentified source he elected not to disclose.
The police suggested that this led to defendant Williams executing the “carnage on the innocent partisans and sympathizers” of UP who were celebrating on the night of 21 November 2023 at about 10:00 pm.
following the police’s investigation, a magisterial court in Monrovia has ordered defendant Williams’ arrest for the brutal incident outside the UP headquarters.
Defendant Willaims is reported to have rammed a speeding vehicle through a crowd of UP supporters gruesomely killing three persons and injuring twenty-five others.
The Monrovia Magisterial Court ordered his arrest based on a complaint filed by the LNP through the Ministry of Justice.
“You are hereby commanded to arrest the living body of Lawrence K. Williams to be identified and forthwith bring him before this court to answer to the charge of murder, aggravated assault, and recklessly endangering of other persons,’ Magistrate L. Ben Barcon ordered his court officers.
The court described defendant Williams’ action as unlawful, wicked, and illegal, adding that it violates Chapter 14 Section 14.1, 14.20, and 14. 25 of the Revised Panel Code of the Republic of Liberia.
The court noted that defendant Williams deliberately drove an unnamed grey Hyundai SUV with its headlights switched off and the front passenger door open.
The court said the accused drove into the jubilant crowd of Unity Party partisans and sympathizers while they were celebrating their victory from the run-off election by NEC at the Unity Party Headquarters.
The LNP on Monday, 27 November 2023, charged and forwarded defendant Williams to the Monrovia City Court for the alleged death of three persons and injury of other persons, both males and females.
According to the police charge sheet, the act of the defendant led an angry mob consisting of partisans and sympathizers to loot and set ablaze the vehicle at the spot where it was abandoned by defendant Williams.
The court noted that the victims were assisted by others who took them immediately to various hospitals including the John F. Kennedy Medical Center, Mawah Clinic, and other local clinics to seek prompt medical attention.
The police indicated that defendant Williams could not convince the investigation of the malfunctioning of the automatic gear of the vehicle which he claimed was the cause of the carnage.
The court document said upon absconding the scene with the aid of a motorcyclist identified as Adolphus Cooper, a student of AME University, defendant Williams declined to have himself reported to the nearest police station.
He allegedly tried convincing the motorcyclist to give the amount of US$280.00 so his location or residence could not be disclosed to anyone.
The police noted that Section 9.1 of the Vehicle and Traffic Law requires that in the case of an accident involving death or serious bodily injuries, the driver should immediately report him or herself to the nearest police station. But defendant Williams failed to do so.