Police Officer James Williams, Jr.

Police Officer James Williams, Jr.

Oakland Police Department, California

End of Watch Sunday, January 10, 1999

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James Williams, Jr.

Officer James Williams was shot and killed by a sniper while he was searching for a gun.

He and another officer were searching a portion of a highway where two suspects tossed a shotgun out of their vehicle window during an earlier police chase. During the search, a sniper on an overpass opened fire on both officers with a high-powered rifle. Officer Williams was struck in the chest, with the round penetrating his vest. He was taken to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.

The other officer was shot but the round was stopped by his handcuff case. The sniper was a friend of the original suspects and decided to shoot at the officers in order to allow the suspects to escape. The suspect was arrested and pled guilty to second-degree murder towards the end of his capital murder trial in order to avoid the death penalty. He was sentenced to life without parole.

Officer Williams had only been with the Oakland Police Department for ten weeks. He is survived by his wife, two sons, and one daughter.


  • Age 41
  • Tour 2 months, 1 week
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Rifle
  • Offender Sentenced to life


Most Recent Reflection

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Officer Williams,
On today, the 21st anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of Oakland. And to your Family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.


United States Border Patrol

January 10, 2020

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