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JSO: Man Killed in Police-Involved Shooting Was Unarmed

6:33 PM, May 9, 2012   |    comments
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office has confirmed the identity of the man killed in a police-involved shooting early Wednesday morning, and they also said he was unarmed. 

Davinian Darnell Williams, who was 35 and lived in Arlington, was killed in the early Wednesday morning shooting. He was also identified as the victim by his family earlier Wednesday afternoon.

It happened Wednesday morning at the intersection of Rogero Road and Arlington Road in Arlington.

According to Chief Tom Hackney, Officer Edwards was trying to pull over a car when the driver, Williams, began avoiding him. Hackney said the car ignored stop signs and other road signs before finally pulling over in a nearby parking lot.

When Edwards approached the car to speak to Williams, Hackney explained Williams did something that made the officer nervous. 

Edwards, a three-year veteran of JSO, then opened fire.

"The officer was alarmed and felt threatened. He used deadly force, discharging his weapon at least seven times, hitting the suspect," said Hackney.

Hackney said during a 3 p.m. news conference that Edwards was acting fidgety and would not show his hands.

Edwards tried to move to the passenger's side to see better, then moved back to the driver's side of the vehicle, Hackney said. Williams "suddenly reached down" and Officer Edwards fired through the rear driver's side window seven times, striking Williams six times.

Hackney also said that Williams had 17.1 grams of powder cocaine in his left sock and 1/2 gram of crack cocaine in his right sock.

Edwards has been placed on administrative leave and JSO, as well as the State Attorney's Office, will be investigating, Hackney said.

Tonya Whitfield, a sister of Williams, says he has two children, a 14-year-old son and a 9-year-old daughter.

"Why they shot seven times is what I don't know. My brother was not a violent person," said Whitfield. 

Tikisha Dozier, Williams' girlfriend, said he visited her at her apartment on Bert Road in the early evening, but did not know why he was in the area around 2 a.m. She last spoke to him around 8:30 p.m. Tuesday. Dozier also said that Williams had a lawn care business.

Dozier is trying to understand why the officer fired his weapon through the rear driver's window.

"Why did they feel intimidated? If this man can show you his driver license, did you (police) all give him the opportunity to show his license because he's legit," said Dozier. 

Warren Harvey, Williams' stepbrother, says other members of the family will refrain from comment until they consult an attorney. 

Williams' criminal history, which dates back to 1992 and was provided by JSO, also included charges of resisting an officer, possession of a controlled substance, and intent to sell.

First Coast News

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