A former Charlotte soccer participant died in police custody. His household needs to know the way.

Christa Williams says nobody instructed her how her son, Jovontaydied.

“The knowledge that I’ve is nothing,” Williams instructed The Charlotte Observer on Friday. “I do not know if my son has been shot, strangled or something.”

Jovontay Avery Williams32, died whereas in custody at Northeast Medical Heart on Monday, June 13, hours after an early morning encounter with police, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police mentioned.

Jovontay Williams earned Division II All-American honors as a junior at JCSU in 2013, the varsity’s first All-American since 2008.

Round 2 am on June 13, police responded to a report of pictures fired into a house within the 300 block of Featherstone Drive in northeast Charlotte. Neighbors alerted officers to Williams, who was seen yelling and appearing “erratically” behind one other house, the CMPD mentioned.

“He wasn’t actually actively speaking with officers,” police Lt. Bryan Crum mentioned throughout a information convention final week.

Officers tried to calm Williams down earlier than utilizing a “Gentle, empty arms” method to detain him after he tried to power his method into one other house, Crum mentioned.

The “soft-empty arms” method means officers don’t use weapons or strikes, a police spokesman instructed the Observer final week. Officers will use their arms, strain factors, an arm bar or a clinch to maneuver a suspect’s arms behind their again to be handcuffed, the spokesman mentioned.

Williams was taken to Atrium Well being College Hospital in a “life-threatening situation” earlier than being transferred to the Northeast for “extra intensive care,” police mentioned. CMPD, nonetheless, has not launched a reason for loss of life nor particulars about Williams’ situation.

The CMPD referred the Observer to the State Bureau of Investigation about Williams’ situation throughout and after the incident.

SBI spokesperson Anjanette Grube instructed the Observer in an electronic mail that the investigation is ongoing and the medical expert would decide the reason for loss of life.

Officers discovered a firearm and drug paraphernalia on the scene, CMPD mentioned in a information launch.

“Suspected narcotics” had been found close to Williams, Crum mentioned.

Police instructed Christa Williams they discovered a “white powdery substance” laying within the grass beside her son, she mentioned.

“My son is not like that,” Williams mentioned.

‘We need to get details’

Christa Williams mentioned Jovontay referred to as her each day, together with the Sunday morning earlier than his loss of life.

She instructed the Observer that police knowledgeable her of his loss of life following the information convention.

“They referred to as me after saying my son’s title on TV,” she mentioned. “They not supposed to place his title out earlier than the household is aware of.”

A CMPD information launch despatched at 3 pm that Monday says Jovontay Williams’ subsequent of kin was notified of his loss of life, however it would not point out when that occurred.

CMPD declined to say when Christa Williams was notified and referred to the Observer to the SBI.

The one factor Christa Williams mentioned she is aware of for positive is that her son died with a medical drawback, which they by no means had a historical past of.

“Jovontay, myself and my household are usually not the sort of those who’s simply gonna get out right here and make a nuisance of ourselves,” Williams mentioned. “We need to get the details.”

Williams’ son did not dangle round lots of people, she mentioned. He solely had three finest pals. He was a “loner,” Williams mentioned, which is why she doesn’t perceive why he was “on a avenue she by no means heard of.”

“My son do not know no one in that space that I do know of,” Williams mentioned.

Williams mentioned her son, his girlfriend and 3-year-old son had moved right into a west Charlotte house the week earlier than his loss of life.

Jovontay Williams and his younger sister at a Johnson C. Smith University football game.  Williams died in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police custody on Monday, June 13.

Jovontay Williams and his youthful sister at a Johnson C. Smith College soccer recreation. Williams died in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police custody on Monday, June 13.

Williams mentioned her son was not excellent. He drank, smoked marijuana and had some prior run-ins with regulation enforcement as a young person, she mentioned.

A background examine of Jovontay Williams additionally exhibits site visitors offenses in North Carolina and a 2016 felony larceny cost that was dismissed. He was additionally charged with misdemeanor drug offenses in DeKalb County, Georgia, from 2007 to 2009. Williams was additionally charged with felony possession of a knife or firearm throughout a fee or try and commit a sure crime in 2007. All his circumstances are settled, data present.

All-American at JCSU

Jovontay Williams, a local of Charlotte, performed soccer at Johnson C. Smith College, an traditionally Black College close to uptown, from 2012 to 2014. As a junior defensive lineman in 2013, he earned Division II All-American honors – the varsity’s first All-American since De’Audra Dix in 2008.

“He got here to us very passionate in regards to the recreation,” Williams’ coach, Steven Aycockinstructed the Observer.

Aycock says Williams taught him about “humility” and “endurance” – two rules he’ll at all times cherish.

“He was one among mine,” Aycock mentioned. “He was a stable particular person who would do something for you. That is simply who Jovontay was. ”

The previous Golden Bulls coach described Williams’ smile as “infectious,” and heralded him as “a person of his phrase.”

“He was a positive younger man,” Aycock mentioned.

Golden Bulls defensive lineman Jovontay Williams celebrates sacking Davidson quarterback Jonathan Carkhuff at Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, NC, in September 2013. Williams died while in a custody at a hospital on Monday, June 13, 2022.

Golden Bulls defensive lineman Jovontay Williams celebrates sacking Davidson quarterback Jonathan Carkhuff at Johnson C. Smith College in Charlotte, NC, in September 2013. Williams died whereas in a custody at a hospital on Monday, June 13, 2022.

Williams obtained an invite to the Carolina Panthers’ rookie mini camp in 2015.

“We did not get an opportunity to speak on a month-to-month foundation, however like I do with all my former gamers, once they run throughout your coronary heart, you examine on them proper then,” mentioned Aycock, now the deputy commissioner for Atlanta’s Division of Parks and Recreation.

The 2 final spoke via messages on Instagram, and Aycock mentioned Williams instructed him about how he had turn into a brand new father. Williams liked his household, particularly his mom and child sister, Aycock mentioned.

“He liked his mom and his sister unconditionally to the moon and past,” they mentioned. “That was a unique love.”

‘A tragic state of affairs’

Steve Joyner Sr., athletic director at JCSU, mentioned the Charlotte college was “saddened” by Williams’ loss of life.

“Our ideas and prayers are with Jovontay’s household and pals,” they mentioned in a press release to the Observer. “We additionally elevate up residents of the neighborhood the place the incident occurred.”

“It is a unhappy state of affairs for each side,” Aycock mentioned. “Town of Charlotte and his household.”

Christa Williams mentioned she’ll should preserve counting on the information to search out out what occurred to her son as a result of nobody is telling her something.

Jovontay Williams with his mother, Christa, left, and younger sister, middle.  Williams died in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police custody Monday, June 13.

Jovontay Williams along with his mom, Christa, left, and youthful sister, center. Williams died in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police custody Monday, June 13.

At a information convention on Featherstone Drive on Monday, Williams mentioned determining and coping with her son’s loss of life has been “hell,” WBTV reported.

The SBI is investigating Williams’ loss of life as a result of it occurred whereas he was in police custody, police mentioned. CMPD Inner Affairs can also be reviewing the officers’ actions concerned, Crum mentioned. A legal investigation for the gunshots can also be underway, police mentioned.

A GoFundMe web page has been set as much as assist the williams household pay for funeral prices.

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