Team Arrests Accused Sheriff’s Deputy Killer; Suspect Had Gun Charges in Haverhill

Officials said John B. Williams refused to show his face for a confirmation photograph and had to be held in place for the picture. (Courtesy photograph.)

The capture team included officers from the Maine Warden Service; Fairfield, Maine, Police; and FBI Boston. (Courtesy photograph.)

After a four-day manhunt, the man accused of killing a Maine’s sheriff’s deputy was arrested in a wooded area early Saturday afternoon.

Twenty-nine-year-old John B. Williams, who had been arrested last month in Haverhill on unrelated gun charges, was captured in a Fairfield, Maine, recreation area. Maine State Police Lt. Col. John Cote revealed details during a press briefing.

“This morning, one of our teams was able to locate John B. Williams outside a small, remote camp, in the area of Lost Brook.”

Somerset County Sheriff Dale Lancaster confirmed reports Williams was restrained at about 12:45, Saturday, using the handcuffs of murdered Cpl. Eugene Cole.

“We did use Cpl. Cole’s handcuffs. I felt that it was fitting where he killed my deputy, Cpl. Gene Cole, and he was brought to justice using Cole’s handcuffs.”

A 13-year veteran of the force, Cole is said to have been involved in the recent arrest of Williams’ girlfriend, pointing to a possible motive for the killing. Williams is also accused of stealing Cole’s police cruiser and robbing a convenience store in the town of Norridgewock, Maine.

According to the Essex County District Attorney’s Office, Williams was due to appear in Haverhill District Court Wednesday to answer to charges of improper storage of an unlicensed firearm and possession of a large capacity firearm (9 mm Smith & Wesson with a 16-round magazine), in addition to automobile-related charges.

Williams was arraigned on March 22, posting $5,000 bail—reduced from the state’s originally asked-for $10,000—on March 31.