A man was arrested Monday morning following a hunt that lasted over two hours.
Andrew DeWayne Williams was wanted for an alleged stabbing that occurred on Sept. 17 in south Marlow. A square mile was cordoned off Monday morning in Marlow to search for Williams.
Due to multiple tips from the community, Williams was also considered a person of interest in a home invasion robbery captured on film that occurred over the weekend in Bray, according to Stephens County Sheriff Wayne McKinney.
“We had been developing some leads on a possible person of interest or a suspect, one of the suspects in our home invasion that occurred this weekend and I think a lot of our viewers and a lot of the people in our county had shared on Facebook,” McKinney said. “One of the individuals that was identified and we felt was an extremely high person of interest, the — man also had a felony warrant on him for assault with a deadly weapon. We were able to locate where he was at this morning —“
Deputies from Stephens County Sheriff’s Department and Marlow Police Department officers arrived at the Ballpark Apartment Complex located at Railroad Street and Ballpark Road at approximately 9:20 a.m. Monday morning to serve Williams with the warrant. Upon their arrival, Williams exited through the back of the complex and took off running north along the railroad tracks, with deputies and officers following closely on foot. Williams, who was clad only in pajama bottoms with no shoes, managed to evade authorities for approximately two hours by concealing himself in the underbrush in the heavily wooded area.
Multiple agencies, including the Stephens County Sheriff’s Department, Duncan Police Department, Grady County Sheriff’s Office, Rush Springs Police Department and the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, quickly responded and cordoned off the area, according to McKinney.
“We’re very pleased — that they responded like they did,” McKinney said.
K-9 Units, air support and a drone were deployed to search for Williams, but ultimately, it was Lt. Tony Aguilera with the Marlow Police Department who located the suspect.
“We watched him run just on the east side of the railroad tracks, where he went into the tree-line — We got on the other side of him, on the north side, so we [knew] he couldn’t have gone very far,” said Aguilera. “What he did, is he went down there about 20 yards and he covered himself up with grass and dirt, we couldn’t see him.”
Aguilera literally stumbled upon Williams while searching through the underbrush.
“What I did is I kept walking back and I started again from where he went into the tree-line, and I almost stepped on him, he was hidden under there,” Aguilera said.
Aguilera gave instructions to Williams to show his hands, but he did not immediately comply, according to the officer.
“I went ahead and deployed my taser then he complied,” said Aguilera. “I covered him with a taser while one of the deputies put him in handcuffs.”
Williams was then taken into custody, walked from the underbrush down the railroad tracks to the waiting vehicles, treated by emergency responders who removed the head of the taser, then taken to Stephens County Jail.
According to McKinney, though Williams is only classified as a person of interest in the weekend robbery at this time, authorities are confident he may have information regarding the robbery and are requesting the community continue to contact them with any tips regarding the second suspect captured on video over the weekend.
“That’s how we develop these leads, that’s how we developed a lot of these leads that we’re working on right now, so without the help of the community and the public, it’s very difficult,” he said.
McKinney said the sheriff’s office is committed to getting violent offenders off the streets and is thankful that no one was home, He said the situation could have escalated and been much worse.
“[The homeowner] was not home and thank God he wasn’t. I firmly believe that someone would have wound up shot, possibly dead,” McKinney said. “When you have individuals that enter a home with the intent to burglarize that home, whether people are there or not, with weapons and to make this even worse, they had their weapons cocked, it’s very obvious in the video [it] wouldn’t have taken much for a shot to be fired. I’m really thankful that it turned out the way it did and I want to get these thugs off the streets.”
Those with information regarding the armed burglary in Bray are urged to contact the Stephens County Sheriff’s Office at 580-255-3131.